Her excellency the Vice President of The Republic of The Gambia, Dr. Isatou Touray has officially inaugurated the Confucius Institute at the University of The Gambia. The institute, to be hosted at the university’s Kanifing Campus, is established in partnership with Guizhou University of China.

The Vice President said the establishment of the Confucius Institute is a clear manifestation of the cordial relationship between The Gambia and The People’s Republic of China. She pointed out that making the University of The Gambia a center of excellence is part of the government’s National Development Plan (NDP).

“The setting of this institute is significant in many respects. First is avails Gambians the opportunity to learn the language and culture of China. This will enhance cross cultural tolerance”.

In his remarks at the ceremony, Vice Chancellor Prof. Faqir Anjum Muhammad expressed his gratitude to the country’s Vice President, the delegation from China, senior government officials and all those that graced the occasion.

“This is made possible due to the memorandum of understanding signed between the President of the Gambia and the President of China. We expected more activities including exchange programmes, symposiums and trainings. Already we have several students are pursuing various Master’s degree programmes in China.”

The Vice Chairman of the Guizhou University Affairs Committee, Tang Ben Wen said they are glad to be in The Gambia. “I extend warm congratulations on behalf of Guizhou University. This institute is a platform for people to people corporation in education and culture.”

Mr. Ben Wen said the Chinese President, Xi Jinping gave a keynote speech pledging to strengthen and promote corporation with African countries at the last Forum on China-Africa Corporation held in Beijing. He added that there are numerous Confucius Institutes around the world and have a key objective of promoting international harmony.

The Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China to The Gambia, H.E Ma Jianchum extended his congratulations to the University of The Gambia, Guizhou University and H.E President Adama Barrow’s government for their consistent efforts in advancing the relationship between the two countries.

“Over 100 Gambian students are currently studying in various university’s in China on Chinese government scholarships…The Confucius Institute will promote cultural exchange between the two countries,” H.E Jianchum revealed.

The event climaxed with the official unveiling of the plaque of the institute by Vice President Dr. Touray and Ambassador Jianchum. The guests were later taken on a conducted tour of the facilities within the institute located on the Peace Building at the Kanifing Campus.