AGAST holds first post-pandemic annual gathering in Bursa, welcomes new executives

Istanbul, 6th February, 2022:- The Association of Gambian Students in Turkey (AGAST) has over the weekend held its first post-pandemic annual gathering in Bursa.


The program, first of its kind since the emergence of COVID-19 pandemic, was meant to bring together Gambian students across Turkey, high profile dignitaries including Gambian diplomats, heads of several organizations and other relevant stakeholders.


The weekend-long annual gathering served as an opportunity for the members to meet, share ideas and experiences and reflect on the activities the student body embarked on during the previous year.


Speaking at the opening ceremony, the outgoing president, Masanneh Fatty underscored the importance of organizing such a gathering.


“AGAST knows that we are students, but also knows that our lives are not all about studying. So, it endeavors to organize gatherings where students can interact, learn from each other, play together and have fun,” he said.


According to him, the objective of AGAST is to promote social solidarity among the students, promote their welfare and attend to their needs.


“Our collective efforts should be oriented towards helping one another, towards our respective needs and to our beloved Gambia as a whole,” he emphasized.


To the outgoing secretary general, Malang B.S. Bojang, AGAST was born out of a genuine desire to strengthen brotherhood and support Gambian students pursuing higher education in the Republic of Turkey. “The Association has ever since contributed to the general welfare of Gambian students in Turkey,” he said.

He added that the association is meant to protect the rights of its members and to do all things necessary to advance and promote their welfare and interests.


In his keynote address, the Gambia’s ambassador to the Republic of Turkey, Sering Modou Njie lauded the numerous successes AGAST has registered thus far, describing it as a treasure.


“Your numerous contribution and achievement, and accomplishment of set goals and objectives of AGAST since its inception to date is treasure,” he said.


Among his key functions as an ambassador, according to him, is to represent and advance the foreign policy objective goals of The Gambia in Turkey.


“To represent Gambians in my area of responsibilities with professionalism, promoting, building and maintaining strong diplomatic and economic ties with the Republic of Turkey that are of strategic importance,” he added.


In the execution of these functions, he continued, AGAST has an imperative rule to play in maintaining, strengthening and promoting healthy relations between Gambia and Turkey.


“I hope we can cope to further strengthen the already friendly relations between The Gambia and Turkey. For that the embassy is always ready to work hand in hand with all of you.”


On The Gambia-Turkey relations, ambassador Njie said the two nations have long standing historical and cultural relationships.

“The two countries continues to share a mutual, beneficial bilateral relationship buttressed by many cooperation agreements. These excellent relations between the two countries are based on our shared belief on the secret ideals and principles democracy.”


Other speakers included Isatou Bakari Jobe, first secretary of Gambian Embassy in Turkey; Sally Badjie, outgoing Vice president; YTB representative, Tuncay Doğa; president of Ipekyolu International Student Association, Ebubekir Armağan; Bursa Metropolitan City representative, Hakan Şamil; and Muhammed Trawally amongst others.


While Treasurer Mariama Manneh and Abdoulie Badjie gave a detailed financial report of the association, SG Malang B.S. Bojang presented a rundown of activities AGAST embarked on during the 2021-2022 academic year.


Host of other activities were also organized, ranging from touring Bursa and visiting the famous Uludağ, to sports and cultural night.

A new executive that will spearhead the affairs of the association for 2022-2023 academic year was also elected. This new team that comprises both former executives and new members are expected to further strengthen the gains that AGAST marked so far.

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