By Aminata S Kuyateh
The Kabuka Ba Joal Association for the nurturing of culture, language and tradition of the Ba Joal people, Thursday launched a book titled Ujuwal Grammar.
The book on the Jolinka people, who are said to have come from Guinea Bissau during the liberation war of 1960s and 1970s, was launched in partnership with the National Centre for Arts and Culture, NCAC at the national museum in Banjul.
Organisers said the ethnic group has been living in the Gambia for decades and their association was formed in 2015.
But according to their chairman Dr Raymond Saidy, the Bajoal tribe has existed in the Gambia for more than a century.
“Our existence was little known.
“The Bajoal young generation has less or no idea about their culture, especially our types of food, dressing and music.”
He said if nothing is done in reviving their culture, “the Bajoal culture and language will be in significant threat.
“As a result, there is a need to revive our culture, be proud of it and conserve it and transfer it to our future generation”.
“Today we are all here to contribute our quarter to make our culture great again. Bajoal is an ethnic group related to the Manjako tribe, but in the Gambia we call them Jolinka,” he said.
Sheikh Omar Jallow, the director of literature, performing and fine arts at the NCAC, said they are mandated to preserve, promote and develop both tangible and intangible cultural heritages.
“Part of this, is the preservation of our national languages. The author of the book did a great work,” he commended.
Author Kemo Keydi said he made his research in Guinea Bissau.