Gov’t, IsDB sign US$10M financing of Bilingual Education Support project
Monday, April 16, 2012
The Government of the Republic of The Gambia and the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB), on Wednesday, April 4 2012, during the 37th annual meeting of the Islamic Development Bank Group in Khartoum, Sudan, signed a loan agreement worth US$ 10 million US Dollars for the financing of the Bilingual Education Support project, a press release from the Finance ministry revealed.
According to the release, the loan, which is to be reimbursed over a period of 25 years, includes a grace period of 7 years and has an annual interest rate of 2.5 percent.
The objective of the project, the release went on, is to contribute to the education policy of The Gambia (2004-2015) and strategy (2006-2015), which aims at improving access, quality and relevance of ‘Madrassah’ education through the promotion and strengthening of bilingual education. The project, the release added, will specifically contribute to improving access and quality to Madrassah education through the construction of 219 classrooms, furniture and recruitment of 400 teachers; provision of learning and teaching materials; training and curriculum development and strengthening of Madrassah education management.
According to the release, Hon. Mambury Njie, minister of Finance and Economic Affairs signed on behalf the Republic of The Gambia, while H.E Dr. Mohamed Ali, president of the Bank Group, signed for Islamic Development Bank. “The Finance minister was accompanied at the meetings and signing, by the permanent and deputy permanent secretaries, Ministry of Finance & Economic Affairs; governor and director of Research, Central Bank of The Gambia and other senior government officials,” the release stated.
The minister of Finance, according to the release, used the occasion to thank H.E Dr. Mohammed Ali, president of IsDB and staff for the excellent cooperation between The Gambiaand Islamic Development Bank, which spans decades since The Gambia joined the Institution in 1980. In his words: “The partnership has been growing from strength to strength resulting to phenomenal benefit to the Gambian people. The IDB Group has since approved a total of $376 million, of which $227 million was for financing priority development projects in the country particularly in telecommunication and energy, and $149 million for financing of trade (i.e. importation of essential commodities and crop financing).”
The release further stated that the Gambian delegation also used the opportunity of the forum to discuss with the Bank’s staff, issues affecting ongoing projects as well as pipeline projects submitted for financing in the coming years. “For the next three years, the authorities have agreed with the Bank a number of projects - about 12 projects worth over US $470 million, for which the Bank is committed to financing to the tune of US$160 million. The projects would be in various sectors of the economy; ranging from agriculture to education, health, transport, industry as well as water and sanitation. These are all priority areas in the Programme for Accelerated Growth and Employment (PAGE) which seeks to transform the Gambian economy to achieve the MDGs targets and reach middle income status in the near future,” the release highlighted.
The authorities of the Ministry of Finance & Economic Affairs on behalf of H.E Sheikh Professor. Alhaji Dr Yahya A.J.J Jammeh, government and people of The Gambia, the release further stated, expressed appreciation to our valued development partners and assured them of their readiness to continue to cooperate with them for the benefit of our people.
Author: Daily Observer