By Ndey Sowe
The Gambia OIC Secretariat has received a high powered delegation from the Republic of Turkey on a security assessment mission in The Gambia.
According to the Secretariat, the high powered delegation which was received on Tuesday 10th May 2022, aims to do a needs assessment in an effort to support the successful hosting of the OIC Summit.
The delegation also met with the Deputy Chief Executive Officer of OIC Gambia Secretariat, the Minister of Interior, the Inspector General of Police and various Police departments, and gauge the summit’s security personnel and equipment as well as visit OIC project sites and conference center, the airport, hotels, etc.
The delegation paid a courtesy call on the CEO and had meetings with the Local Organizing Committee and Security sub-committee at the Sir Dawda Kairaba International Conference Centre in Kerr Serign.
Essa Bokarr Sey, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of OIC Gambia Secretariat in an interview, said the principal part of the visit is for security and to see the level of preparedness of OIC Gambia secretariat.
“They need to update themselves with the status of things and be able to report back to their Government on the areas they will be able to support us also,” Mr. Sey explained.
Mr. Sey added that in terms of cooperation, Turkey is one of the best regarding security; that recently, they were in Turkey and stayed there for one month and were trained on security and intelligence with the OIC security sub-committee, together with a contingent of the Gambia Armed Forces who were also trained.
“So far, Turkey has trained about one thousand two-hundred security officers and this is an ongoing process of training more personnel,” he said.
Mr. Sey assured full security preparedness when it comes to visible and invisible structures of the security and said he is confident that Turkey will share their best intelligence with their Gambian counterparts for a successful OIC Summit in the country.
Turgay Olgun, Chief of Division of the Turkish National Police said they have facilitated a high-level security training for security personnel of the Gambia; that the capacity-building programme was part of the Secretariat’s goal of equipping Gambian Police and other security services with modern apparatus and the technical know-how to keep the streets of Gambia safe before, during and after the Summit.
“We will need to update ourselves with the status of things and be able to report back to our Government where they will be able to support the security of the summit,” Mr. Olgun explained.
Nfally Fadera, Head of Brand and Communications at OIC Gambia Secretariat said they are working as if the summit will be held tomorrow; that this is why all the stakeholders involved in the OIC project are not resting in preparation for the summit. Fadera said all the OIC projects are at the implementation stage and he is hopeful that by the time the summit starts, they will have covered lot of ground and will be able to host the summit in a way that will make Gambia and Gambians proud.