Fulbe Africa (FA), Fulani cultural organization last Saturday organised an inter-cultural confab designed to foster unity and cohesion among the different cultural groups in The Gambia.
The event held at hotel in Senegambia, also seeks to diversify the country’s rich cultural heritage among the different groupings to boost peaceful co-existence.
At the event, Alieu Sowe, president of Fulbe Africa said FA organized the event to create a platform where diverse ethnic groups in the country would start a new chapter in maintaining and promoting peaceful coexistence irrespective of different backgrounds.
In the midst of increasing religious and ethnic tensions around the globe, Sowe said FA decided to come-up with this initiative to promote unity and oneness in the country.
He thus urged stakeholders to embrace tolerance and support initiatives that would foster respect, peaceful co-existence and dialogue among people of different cultures and religious backgrounds.
Presenting on cultural diversity, Samba Baldeh, a resident of Wisconsin in the United States of America, who is currently on visit to the Smiling Coast of Africa, called on Gambians to remain united and avoid all forms of tribal sentiments.
He reminded that The Gambia has multi-ethnic groups and languages and thus there is a need for all to use their various languages as a tool for communication and not one of division.
Also speaking at the ceremony, Bakary Y. Badjie, minister for Youth and Sports underscored the importance of cultural co-existence in the development of any country, saying culture is part of us and something that ‘we must do everything to retain it.’
“Of course, there are some cultures that we think are bad and we must change it but it is our responsibility as young people to keep, learn, understand, sustain and uphold the cultures that we have.”
Minister Badjie reminded the youth of the huge task that lies in their hands, while also reminding them of their role to promote cultures.
He also challenged them to embrace cultures of other tribes to ensure peaceful coexistence in the country.
‘If the youth failed to learn their cultures then the country could risk losing her cultures.”
Hassoum Ceesay, executive director for the National Centre for Arts and Culture (NCAC) commended FA for the great initiative in unifying Gambians.
Culture, he added, plays an integral role in ensuring peaceful coexistence among neighbors.
“National language also plays a crucial role in unifying the public because if someone visits people and speaks their language they will love and appreciate that person. Language is very important.”
Essa Bocar Sey, special guest speaker called on all and sundry to maintain peace in Africa, reminding that no nation can attain rapid development in the absence of peace.
Imam Alhaiba Hydra, a renowned religious scholar, preached for tolerance and unity especially among the diverse ethnic groups in the country and beyond.
He indicated that even Almighty God always addressed humanity in general and not a particular tribe in the world.