President Adama Barrow of the Gambia Tuesday met with members of the International Association of Ahmadi Architects and Engineers at his office in Banjul.

The group was at the State House to discuss plans to expand their humanitarian services to the Gambia through technical, engineering and technology support.

Akram Ahmedi, chairman of the association said their projects came on the backdrop of instructions from their Jamaat leader to help develop Africa further on top of hospitals and schools already being built.

“We have tried to bring in water for remote villages of the Gambia and the rest of Africa. Also, we want to bring electricity so that people can benefit from these services which Allah has provided through these avenues,” he said.

Top on the group’s scale of preference for the Gambia is to build an international center of excellence for vocational and technical training to be called Masul International Technical College.

The group’s leader said they have very good and highly qualified African engineers and architects who are ready to transfer the requisite skills and knowledge needed to empower young people into meaningful selfreliant ventures.  

He observed that there is a skills gap in the country in the area of architecture, artistry and technical skills, which he hopes the college would try to address. Emphasizing that their ultimate goal is skills and knowledge transfer, Chairman Ahmedi said some of the resource persons would be recruited in-country through training of trainers.  

For his part, President Adama Barrow extolled the group for creating investment opportunities in the country with this new venture. He praised the track records of the Jamaat in providing quality services in the country, citing the hospital in Tallinding as an example.

He expressed the commitment of his government to create the enabling environment for all to excel. The president used the opportunity to encourage youths to learn skills if they are not able to excel academically in schools.

“Failure in school does not mean failure in life. Not all can be employed in offices. Hence such ventures go in line with government development objective of providing a corps of highly trained and skilled youthful population,” he noted.