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UTG Faraba campus inaugurated

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By Aminata Kuyateh

President Adama Barrow on Saturday inaugurated Lot 1 of the University of The Gambia development project, comprising notably a library with over 800 student capacity named after the late vice president Dr. Badara Alieu Joof at a ceremony held at the new UTG complex in Faraba Banta.

The completed Lot comes with four schools and multiple facilities including a state-of-the-art library, step-down electrical sub-station, as well as waste and water treatment plant.

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The president also laid the foundation stone for Lot 2 of the project. The project is funded by the Gambia government with collaboration from international organizations such as the Kuwaiti Fund, OPEC Fund, Saudi Fund, BADEA and the Islamic Development Bank as co-financiers.

The ceremony was attended by government officials, dignitaries and members of academic communities.

Speaking at the ceremony, President Barrow affirmed his government’s unwavering support for higher education and rejoiced with the education sector over the magnificent development and the end of a long struggle faced by the UTG.

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 “After 24 years of existence the UTG can now boast of a permanent place and hope, the era of renting classroom spaces and conducting lectures under trees is now history. This is a story of a long journey to provide the faculty and students of our national pride permanent campus. Today, university students have a magnificent campus where they can focus on educational pursuits and no longer will they have to worry about where to hold classes and have access to resource materials or use suitable equipment for academic work,” the president said.

Vice chancellor Prof. Herbert Robinson expressed gratitude to President Barrow and his government for their steadfast support in creating a conducive environment for higher learning and knowledge advancement.

 “We embarked on this journey with determination despite starting without a single structure of our own, and had to rely on the generous existing tertiary institutions particularly the Management Development Institute and the Gambia College.

Today, we witnessed the inauguration of Lot.1 comprising the school of arts and sciences, school of business and public administration, school of education and school of information technology and communication and the library. We reflect on the journey that has brought us here. All the buildings are fully furnished with modern teaching and lab equipment,” he said.

The deputy director of Kuwait Fund, Eman Alabdulrazzaq, said the Kuwaiti Fund participated in financing the construction of Lot.1 with a concessional loan of 4.0 million K.D, which includes major structures of the Faraba Banta campus project, in addition to the external works of the roadway system, the parking and utilities, with a total cost of about $37.3 million.

He disclosed that since 1997 and until today, the Kuwaiti Fund extended 13 soft loans to the Gambia, with a total amount of about $152 million to participate in the financing of development projects in various sectors and the Fund also extended 7 technical assistances with a total amount of $4.5 million to The Gambia.

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