Today, with our eyes filled with tears and a broken heart, we pay hommage to Ambassador Ousman Sallah’s erudition, diplomatic talents and exceptional performance throughout his career as a public servant and a diplomat.
Indeed, Ambassador Ousman Sallah had excelled in the various undertakings of his life, leaving in his trail most pleasant memories.
He was known for his unflinching honesty, integrity, and discretion, as well as his exceptional powers of analysis and persuasion.
He was admired for his wisdom and courage, his ability to make informed decisions even in the most complex, critical situations.
Besides, he had always been a brilliant diplomat who had represented his country with singular expertise and adroitness.
As such, he would always be remembered for his charisma, commitment and diplomatic gifts.
In truth, Ambassador Ousman Sallah had always handled things so calmly and with such assurance.
In short, he had an enormous amount of charm and terrific political instinct.
As a diplomat, Ambassador Ousman Sallah had never pulled his punches when it came to defending the prestige and interest of The Gambia and her representatives abroad.
I had the singular privilege and good fortune of working closely with Ambassador Ousman Sallah for some years when he was The Gambia’s Ambassador to the United States and The Gambia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations and I was his deputy.
He was not only my boss but in many ways was almost a guru for me and a true friend.
I would remain one of his ardent appreciators.
As such, I can safely state, without fear of contradiction, that Ambassador Ousman Sallah had always been an exemplary representative of his country and a man who had embodied all that is finest in The Gambia’s diplomatic and public service.
In so being, Ambassador Ousman Sallah had represented our country, our subregion and indeed our continent with enormous graciousness, integrity and distinction.
Suffice it to state that Ambassador Ousman Sallah had always been admired everywhere he had served as Gambia’s representative but also had been much loved by all who had the honour to cross his paths.
In all fairness, he had always been a “friend of all the world”.
As a matter of fact, Ambassador Ousman Sallah had been the nicest of persons to work with.
In passing, he had a great sense of humour and always saw the amusing side of persons and events.
I would continue to keep very fond memories of him as the great gentleman that he had always been and also of his charming spouse, Mrs Ramou Sallah, of blessed memory.
Needless to mention also that Ambassador Ousman Sallah had always been admired by his colleagues and consulted regularly by the network of diplomat colleagues, foreign affairs agents and organizations.
As such, having been a retired Gambian public servant and diplomatic agent, Ambassador Ousman Sallah would certainly continue to be missed at home and abroad, but his legacy would live through the work of the many agents, organizations and people that he had touched and mentored throughout his public life.
May the Almighty God overlook his shortcomings, if any, and grant Ambassador Ousman Sallah an eternal peaceful final resting abode in the highest Al Jannah, which he rightfully deserves and where he rightfully belongs.
Adieu, my former boss and onetime friend.