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Rawda welcomes OIC delegates

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Press release

On the momentous occasion of a once-in-a-life-time Summit of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation scheduled to take place in the Republic of The Gambia on 4 through 5 May 2024, Majmouatou Rawdatul Majalis, represented by its President, Vice Presidents, Secretary General and other officials of its Executive Bureau, wishes the Head of State, Mr Adama Barrow, his government and the people of The Gambia a resounding success in their arrangements to host the 57th Summit of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).

Rawdat, as a Muslim organisation that strives to uphold our cherished mainstream Islam anchored in the Ash’ari Creed, the Maliki school of jurisprudence and Sufism, believes that it should play a major role in ensuring a successful outcome of the Summit. The OIC, a Muslim political organisation, was established in 1969 in the aftermath of an arson attack on the Al Aqsa Mosque of Al Quds (Jerusalem). At a meeting convened by the King of Morocco, Hassan II, to discuss implications of the arson, the meeting resolved to establish the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) as a global rallying point for Muslims decades after the collapse of the Ottoman Caliphate.

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The summit in Morocco was followed by the maiden meeting of the Islamic Conference of Foreign Ministers in 1970 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The organisation’s charter was adopted in 1972 wherein the OIC’s objectives and principles to strengthen and promote solidarity and cooperation among its member states were outlined.

At its inception, the OIC was composed of only 30 member states but has now grown to comprise 57 member states spread over Africa, Asia, Europe and South America. Over time, in view of monumental developments that took place at the turn of the 20th century, the need was felt to draft a new charter for the Organisation to keep pace with the exigencies of the 21st century.

The Organisation has been playing a key role in maintaining world peace and fostering closer ties among its member states through peace building, conflict resolution, economic development, cultural cooperation, etc. It has outlined priority thrusts such as peace and security, Palestine and the Al Quds Question, poverty alleviation, counter-terrorism, investment and finance, food security, science and technology, economy and trade, climate change and sustainability, moderation, culture and interfaith harmony and dialogue, women’s empowerment, joint Islamic humanitarian action, human rights, good governance, etc.

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In the OIC’s bid to achieve the foregoing priority thrusts, it established specialised organs such as the Islamic Development Bank (IDB), the Islamic Educational, Scientific, Cultural Organisation (ISESCO), the Islamic Broadcasting Union, the Union of News Agencies of OIC Member States, the Islamic Committee of the Red Crescent, which is the Islamic equivalent of the International Committee of the Red Cross, the Science, Technology and Innovation Organisation, the Islamic Organisation for Food Security. It has also established several subsidiary organs and agencies under its ambit.

It should be borne in mind that the OIC is a political institution that strives to ensure and safeguard the interests and welfare of the global Muslim community.

It is also worth noting that two Gambians of loving memory, namely, Ousman Othman and Momodou Sosseh had occupied the positions of Deputy Secretary General and Director of the Conference Department respectively. Its Islamic University of Technology headquartered in Dhaka, Bangladesh is headed by a Gambian called Dr Omar Jah Junior. The Gambia has benefitted and continues to benefit from OIC, its affiliated institutions as well as its subsidiary organs and agencies.

The Gambia is only the second member state in Africa after Senegal to host the OIC Summit. It is therefore the duty of every Gambian to play a role in the success of the event. It is in this spirit that Rawdat, as a Muslim organisation, organised a session of Quranic recitation and prayer on Sunday, 28

April 2024 at the Faji Kunda Grand Mosque. It also avails itself of this opportunity to call on all Imams of The Gambia to officiate Quranic recitations and prayer for the same purpose.

May Allah the Almighty guide The Gambia toward the path of peace, progress and prosperity.

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