By Own Correspondent – The Gambia and neighbouring Senegal have resolved to strengthen the already existing co-operation and friendly relations between the two countries.
This is contained in a communiqué issued following a day’ visit to Dakar by Gambia’ minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr Momodou Tangara, who met his Senegalese counterpart Madicke Niang and President Abdoulaye Wade.
Below we reproduce the full text of the communiqué:
At the invitation of His Excellency Maître Madické Niang, Senior Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Senegal, Honourable Dr Mamadou TANGARA, Minister of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and Gambians Abroad of the Republic of The Gambia undertook a working visit to the Republic of Senegal, on Tuesday 4th January 2011. The purpose of the visit was geared towards strengthening the existing co-operation and friendly relations between the two countries.
During his visit, Honourable Dr Mamadou Tangara was also received in audience by His Excellency Maître Abdoulaye Wade, President of the Republic of Senegal, to convey a special message from His Excellency Sheikh Professor Dr Alhaji Yahya AJJ JAMMEH, President of the Republic of The Gambia. Honourable Minister TANGARA also met with His Excellency Maître Souleymane Ndéné Ndiaye, Prime Minister of the Republic of Senegal, during which the latter made a proposal to host the next Joint Consultative Committee meeting not later than the end of February 2011.
The two Foreign Ministers had a tête-à-tête discussion during which they reviewed the following issues:
-The status of implementation of the outcome of the 5th Session of the Ministerial Joint Commission Meeting between Senegal and The Gambia.
-The terms and conditions of the Consultative Committee meeting to be co-chaired by Their Excellencies Madam Dr Aja Isatou Njie-Saidy, Vice President of the Republic of The Gambia and Maitre Souleymane Ndene Ndiaye, Prime Minister of the Republic of Senegal.
-The process for the establishment of the Senegalo-Gambian Permanent Secretariat.
-With respect to the conclusions of the 5th Session of the Joint Ministerial Co-Commission, the two Ministers noted, with satisfaction, the efforts made by the two Governments to facilitate the stay of the nationals living on either sides of the two countries borders.
– they also welcomed the significant progress achieved with regard to the conclusions of the meeting of the Joint Boundary Committee, held in Banjul on May 10, 2010, as well as the initiatives developed at the border area concerning the access to medical care.
-In addition, the two Ministers pledged to pursue efforts aimed at accelerating the implementation of the recommendations of the 5th Session of the Joint Ministerial Commission, especially those relating to: the establishment of a network of Senegalese and Gambian women entrepreneurs; and experience sharing in the areas of hydrocarbons, domestic fuel and renewable energies.
The two sides also decided to cooperate and work on initiating joint projects in all areas, especially: In the area of Health – to promote experience sharing in the form of twinning, particularly in the health districts located in border areas; Electrification of cross-border areas by power companies and rural electrification agencies of both countries, based on existing funding opportunities at ECOWAS; and Education – with respect to the Consultative Commission, the two Ministers reiterated their commitment to making this institution a forum for dialogue and consultation to monitor, in the interest of both countries, issues related to their economic and social development.
In this regard, they promised to make every effort to meet by the end of February 2011, as proposed by His Excellency the Prime Minister of Senegal. They also reaffirmed their willingness to continually work together to strengthen the existing fruitful cooperation and friendly relations between the two countries, particularly through the establishment, by the end of February 2011, of the Senegalo-Gambian Permanent Secretariat. In this regard, both Ministers mentioned the principle of a rotating chairmanship after a period of three years, renewable once.