The donation was held at the warehouse opposite the Old Jeshwang Cemetery on the 12th February, 2013. And the presentation ceremony was graced by members from (NEMA) to (NDMA) through their High Commissioner to the Vice President of the Republic of the Gambia.
The Director of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) of Nigeria, Muhammad Sani Sidi on the occasion of the handing over of relief materials from the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to the Government of the Gambia said, he is highly honoured and delighted to witness the occasion of the handing over of relief materials approved by the Nigerian President Dr. GoodLuck Ebele Jonathan. He also dilated that this occasion once more proves the sustenance of the laudable cooperation between their sister nations linked with a common geography, cultural definition and historic experiences. He opined that in March, 2011, a high powered delegation led by the permanent Secretary in the office of the Vice President of the Gambia, visited (NEMA), accompanied by the Gambian High Commissioner to Nigeria. He asserted that during that visit, officials of (NEMA) and (NDMA) agreed in principle to work together, share experiences and assist each other to improve their capacity and expertise in emergency preparedness, response, mitigation and humanitarian service delivery. He further highlighted that the meeting culminated into a study tour in April, 2012 by (NEMA) to the Gambia during which both officials of the agencies noted the capacities and challenges faced by the (NDMA). He further postulated that they also appreciated their efforts at taking disaster risk reduction and promised to provide the necessary technical support to the agency and its stakeholders. She said that this event is therefore a fulfillment of that commitment on mutual support and cooperation between the agencies. Adding that last week they signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on the exchange of personnel between (NEMA) and NDMA with the Gambia Government that was ably represented by Angela B Colley, the Gambian High Commissioner in Nigeria. She reiterated the full commitment of NEMA towards supporting NDMA on capacity building emergency preparedness, response and mitigation in line with existing bilateral cooperation protocols between their two countries and the terms of the (MOU). She summed up by expressing delight to the President of the Gambia Yahya Jammeh, The Vice President Dr.Aja Isatou Njie-Saidy for the wonderful hospitality extended to them during their stay in the Gambia and further expressed gratitude to the Management and staff of NDMA for their zeal and commitment towards sustaining the friendship and mutual support with NEMA of Nigeria. She also expressed sincere Gratitude to the Nigerian High Commissioner in the Gambia Mrs. Esther .J. Audu, for reading his speech on his behalf and for all the support and liaison with relevant officials of the Gambia, to ensure this collaboration between NEMA and NDMA. He above all prayed that this new level of partnership between the two agencies will strengthen the existing bilateral relationship between the two countries and serve as a model worthy of emulation to promote progress and development in the West African Sub--region and the South-South cooperation.
The Vice President of the Gambia who received the goods on behalf of the President of the Gambia, for her part expressed gratitude to the Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan for this laudable donation of quality materials. She also went on to assert that this clear manifestation of genuine friendship between the Gambia and Nigeria. She further added that the two countries are both members of ECOWAS and the United nations, but it goes beyond that, because they have been friends since immemorial. She also said that this donation will enhance the cooperation between the countries by enabling the Gambia to learn from their counterparts which she said would also enable them to share experiences. She further disclosed that many people do go the western countries to see technical advice but for Gambia, they believe in working with their fellow African countries by exchanging ideas on disasters from flash floods, drought and so on. She also stipulated that the Gambia would like to receive families from Nigeria to visit them. She also pointed out in the crucial roles that the Nigerian people in the county by saying that from the Judiciary, schools, the health sector to name a few there are Nigerians serving there. She also said that they want to go beyond the piecemeal base of disaster relief; that they have to factor the issue of resilience which she said is all due to the poor infrastructural building of roads, buildings etc and to bear in mind the disasters.
The donated items range from foodstuff and domestic chores are Rice, Millet, Guinea Corn, Maize, Couscous, Spaghetti, Flour ,Vegetable Oil, Palm Oil, Powdered Milk, Sugar, Milo, Tomato Puree,Ioidized Salt, Omo Detergent, plastic Spoons, plastic Cups, Plastic Plates, Cooking Pots, bathing Soap, Nylon Mats and Blankets under the direct control of the executive officer of the National Disaster Management Agency Mr. Poulo O.N.Joof.