Jammeh caps Saudi visit ‘successful’

The Gambian leader has crowned as “successful” his four-day state visit to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia where he engaged in a series of bilateral activities meant to bolster relations between Banjul and Riyadh.

His Excellency Sheikh Professor Alhaji Dr. Yahya Jammeh, accompanied by a high-ranking delegation including the First Lady was taking questions from journalists early Saturday morning at the Banjul International Airport upon his arrival from the Kingdom.

 “We are very grateful that it was a very fruitful trip but it will become more fruitful when the objective of the trip becomes manifested in the livelihood of Gambians,” the president said, while thanking the king of Saudi Arabia, the crown prince and their entire government for the warm welcome accorded to them. “I can assure you that Gambians would stand to benefit from the visit,” he remarked. 

With regards to the private sector, the Gambian leader pointed out that a lot more needs to be done, but noted that the groundwork has already been done for them. Jammeh observed that the information about Africa with regards to the private sector is very minimal; something he insisted ought to be improved. 

He hinted plans to have more exchange visits between The Gambia and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. “My principle has always been that no matter what I tell you about The Gambia, visit it yourself to see maybe what I have not seen because the point of view of a businessman and a politician are different. So there is going to be a lot of activity and interaction between the Gambian private sector and the Saudi private sector. The future is very bright and we leave all the things in the hands of the Almighty Allah,” he further remarked.

Declaring his four-day visit as one of the best trips, the Gambian leader continued: “I think it can only be compared to that of Turkey, because there too, we got approval for everything that we had asked for and Saudi is no different. But I want Gambians to see it physically being done than just telling them this is what is going to happen. By the grace of the Almighty Allah every Gambian would live to be grateful to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.” 

Airport ceremonies

The Gambian leader was earlier treated to the usual airport ceremonies by members of The Gambia Armed Forces (GAF). He was prior to that, received at the foot of the aircraft just a little over 08:00am by the speaker of the National Assembly, Hon. Abdoulie Bojang, and the dean of the Diplomatic community in The Gambia and ambassador of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Her Excellency Esther John Audu. Also present were Cabinet ministers, service chiefs, National Assembly members, heads of institution as well as APRC party supporters and militants.