By MUHAMMED Sailu BAH
As part of the activities on Global Entrepreneurship Week, the American Chamber of Commerce in The Gambia (AMCham), organised a day long inspiration forum for young people in The Gambia.
The forum, which was held at the Relax for Sahel Complex in Bijilo on Wednesday, 25 November, 2015, attracted students, young entrepreneurs and youths from diverse areas as well as some entrepreneurs who are considered to have succeeded in their enterprises and invited by AMCham to inspire the young people.
According to the organisers, the forum is organised to create a platform for young aspiring entrepreneurs to have the opportunity to be inspired by businesspeople.
Three different successful entrepreneurs were invited to make a presentation on basic principles or channels of enterprise development and each one of them also was able to give their story on how they became successful which led to questions from participants.
Speaking at the occasion, Mr. Abdoulie Touray, President of AMCham, urged the young people to take up this opportunity to listen and get inspiration from the entrepreneurs who succeeded in their respective ventures.
He underscored the importance of entrepreneurship as a “poverty eradicator”. He further said that entrepreneurship is key to the development of every country.
“AMCham’s primary responsibility is to develop young aspiring entrepreneurs to become successful,” he remarked.
Mr. Touray said the Gambia has a lot of success stories but who are never celebrated.
He noted that young people should be seen as the hope and touch bearers of the nation.
He concluded by advicing them to have self esteem, adding that AMCham is here to inspire young people to be more innovative.
Kebba Tamsir Njie, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) AMCham, said the forum was organised to bring in students from different schools and young entrepreneurs to be inspired by experienced entrepreneurs.
Papa Yusupha Njie, CEO Unique Solutions, during his inspirational speech as one of the successful entrepreneurs, challenged young people to have passion to further impact on their lives and others.
Mr Njie said he started somewhere so many years ago, with little amount of money, before becoming a successful man in life.
He admitted that he has gone through a lot of challenges, especially societal challenges, but notwithstanding, he was able to overcome them.
He adviced the young people not to be fearful of failure because, as he puts it, “failure is the way to improve”.
The Unique Solutions CEO cited some of the challenges that may hinder young aspiring entrepreneurs in the Gambia, such as lack of access to credit from banks and having collateral as well as the high interest rates.
Mr. Njie further stressed the need for young people to be innovative and to have the “self believe” and confidence in themselves.
Other speakers were Mamour Cham, President of Gambia Bankers Association, and Jacqueline Muhammed, Managing Director Nubian Queen Services.
The moderator of the forum was Ms. Sukai Cham.