On Day Six, Leading a Country Through Crisis

BANGUL — The day began with a lengthy working meeting meeting with Daedalus Ceesay, permanent secretary at the Ministry of Youth and Sport. Mr. Ceesay’s deputies also joined us to discuss youth policy and the #SDGs. We later paid a courtesy call on Henry Gomez, Minister of Youth and Sport. The highlight of the day was our next stop: a meeting with Vice President Fatoumata Tambajan. The Vice President, who also serves as Minister of Women’s Affairs, briefed the delegation on the social, economic and political crisis that she and President Adama Barrow inherited. (For more on the circumstances surrounding the Gambian elections 18 months ago, see this article by delegation member John Yearwood.) Ms. Tambajan said the administration has been busy addressing the challenges confronting Gambia. But she acknowledged that there’s a tremendous amount of anxiety. She said they’re committed to meeting the needs of the population, ranging from job creation to food security. Before concluding the Gambia visit, the delegation was treated to a delicious lunch of local delicacies prepared by the country’s top event planner.

UN, Education and Media Dominate Day Five

BANGUL — The #Ardn2018 delegation started the day with a series of meetings with United Nations officials in Gambia. Resident Coordinator Ade Mamonyane Lekoetje, who also serves as UNDP’s Resident Representative, and other UN officials briefed the delegation on their work amplifying the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. We went in to meetings with the Minister of Communications, Vice Chancellor and other leaders of the University of Gambia and ended the day with the Gambian Union of Journalists. Many opportunities for cooperation were discussed and plans were made for a number of follow up discussions.


On Day Four, A Gambian Welcome

BANJUL, Gambia —After four days in Dakar, the #ARDN2018 delegation arrived in Gambia where members were welcomed by an enthusiastic crowd of young leaders representing Rojalnu Gambia. The delegation was interviewed by Tenneng Gitteh with GRTS and other media. Also meeting the delegation were representatives of the United Nations.


Media Partnerships take Center Stage on Day Four

DAKAR — The #ARDN2018 delegation and Senegalese journalists concluded an insightful discussion on Senegalese journalism and coverage of Black Americans and Africa. The delegation also discussed how the media groups that are part of the study tour could collaborate with the Senegalese media organizations. The partner groups on the tour are the National Association of Black Journalists, the National Newspaper Publishers Association and the Vienna, Austria-based International Press Institute. The groups committed to producing a Memorandum of Understanding around a few important areas, including training, sharing of content and participation in each other’s conventions.


Senegal’s Connections to the World Focus of Day Three

DAKAR — On the third day of the West African study tour, delegatiom members met with a number of Senegalese and international officials, including representatives of the United Nations,  former Senegal Prime Minister Aminata Touré, Amadou Niang of Millennium Promise and George Hodgson, British ambassador to Senegal. The topics discussed ranged from Senegal’s education system to its interactions with the UN system to Brexit’s potential impact in Africa.

Education, Innovation Focus of Day Two

Djibril Diallo, president/CEO, of ARDN with Prof. Mary Teuw Niane, minister of Higher Education, Research and Innovation.

DAKAR — The ARDN2018 study tour delegation had a busy day learning about Senegal’s plans for higher education and innovation. Prof. Mary Teuw Niane, minister for Higher Education, Research and Innovation spent more than four hours with the delegation discussing the country’s virtual university, plans for building several universities and the innovative City of Knowledge.

Some of the participants gave their impressions of the briefing. Video

ARDN leads West Africa mission to support Sustainable Development Goals

(From left) Dr. Dibril Diallo, ARDN president/CEO; Constance Newman, ARDN chairwoman; UN Deputy Secretary General Amina Mohammed; and Jeffrey Sachs, head of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network.

NEW YORK, N.Y., April 19, 2018 – The president and CEO of the African Renaissance and Diaspora Network will lead a high-level delegation of political, business and media leaders on a study tour to Senegal and Gambia from April 22-28, the organization announced today.

The mission is part of ARDN’s “Pathway to Solutions” initiative that seeks to popularize the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals, said Djibril Diallo, who assumed leadership of the NGO on March 25 after more than three decades as an executive with the United Nations.

Continue reading “ARDN leads West Africa mission to support Sustainable Development Goals”