By Makutu Manneh
On Saturday 23rd June 2022, President Adama Barrow laid the foundation stone for Radisson Blu five star hotel in Bajilo, in the West Coast Region.
The five star hotel is one of the five projects to be implemented in the country for the OIC’s 2022 Summit, with just six months to go, before the end of year.
During the foundation stone laying the Chairperson and concessionaire of Immoland SARL, informed that the hotel should be completed within fifteen months.
The project will cost 100 million US dollars, and the hotel will have 60 presidential and royal suits alongside 400 luxurious rooms.
“Let me use this opportunity to emphasise that the Gambia will indeed host the summit and we are on track in doing so in a spectacular fashion,” Barrow said.
“We have the capacity and by God’s grace we will succeed.” Barrow said they have the will, ability and the resources to host the summit. The president added that his Government will ensure that the contractors, consultants and other stakeholders deliver and complete all the necessary infrastructural projects on time. He said the OIC projects are designed to be legacy projects whose impact will far out live the summit; that for this reason, they will ensure they get everything right in the best interest of the Gambia and the global Muslim community.
The President went on to say that the hotel will uplift the country’s destination to a new level and rank it among the favorite destinations in the world. He further said a joint operation of Sir Dawda Kairaba Jawara International Conference Centre, the VVIP lounge at the Airport and Radisson Blu Gambia, is expected to uniquely position the Gambia as a leading destination for international meetings, conferences and exhibitions.
“I encourage the youth to take advantage of this opportunity to acquire skills and generate income to become productive and self reliant citizens,” the President said.
Yankuba Dibba, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Gambia OIC Secretariat said the five-star hotel is unique because it is a public / private partnership and the single biggest investment in the history of the hospitality industry in the country; that the event is the outcome of three long years of a thorough and transparent due process.
Abdoulie Cham, the Chairperson of Immoland said the investment is based on the spirit of creating the African cooperation especially between the Gambia and Senegal.
“It is my strong believe that as Africans, we should begin to promote trade and investment among ourselves,” he said; that the five-star hotel will contribute to the local economy and create jobs for young people of the Gambia and Senegal.
He appealed to the president to provide them the necessary operational and environmental support to move on as fast as possible, in establishing their Joint Company IMMOGAM, to ensure they achieve their objectives without delay.