By Olimatou Coker
Islamic scholar Abdoulie Dumbuya of Bakau has disputed a statement made by a Banjul Muslim elder during the eid courtesy call on President Barrow regarding the founding of Gambia Muslim Senior Secondary School in the capital.
He told The Standard on Sunday: “”I heard over the television someone telling President Barrow that the Banjul Muslim elders were the ones who brought Muslim High School to Banjul which I totally disagree with because it was because of me that Muslim Senior Secondary School was established.”
Dumbuya said he was among the Gambian students who negotiated with Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, then leader of Libya, in 1970 to build an Islamic university in The Gambia.
He said he submitted “an application” to the Libyan authorities for the establishment of the university to be preceded by setting up of an English college. He said a few weeks later, he was informed that Gaddafi accepted his application.
Mr Dumbuya explained: “I received an invitation from the Libyan ambassador to Mauritania to discuss the matter further. During the meeting, the ambassador told me that Libya was ready to help my country but that they did not want to do so under the aegis of The Gambia government but under an Islamic society and this agreement was put on paper. I came back to The Gambia to discuss the matter with Imam Momodou Lamin Bah who informed Dr IM Samba, leader of Islamic association in The Gambia. After two days, Dr Samba came with a big delegation to meet me and I told them everything about my negotiations with the Libyan leader and Libyan ambassador in Mauritania on the proposal to build a university in The Gambia.
“The mistake I made was to hand the papers to them. And before I knew it, they pushed me out and betrayed me. They never included me in the committee and they never mentioned me in this project.
“As a result of this betrayal, they were only able to get Muslim High School and could not get the other colleges. If only I was included in the committee, I would have got an English university with an Arabic section to complete my agreement with the Libyan leader. They lost that because the Banjulians chose to betray me in my effort and they didn’t know the whole detail and could not get their way,” he concluded.