As part of its corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities in Africa, The All Africa Music Awards (AFRIMA) on Wednesday May 25, 2016 donated educational materials,computers and musical equipment to Bakoteh Proper Lower Basic School in Banjul, The Islamic Republic of Gambia.
Led by the Head of Culture, African Union Commission (AUC), Ms. Angela Martins and the President/Executive Producer of AFRIMA, Mr. Mike Dada, the AFRIMA team also had members of its international committee, The AFRIMA Jury members, Partners and Sponsors, African superstars who were winners at AFRIMA 2015 in Lagos (Adekunle Gold (Nigeria), Stanley Enow (Cameroun), M’Vula(Angola), Stonebwoy (Ghana), Vyper (Gambia) and Ahmed Soultan (Morocco) among others) as well as journalists from the five regions of Africa.
The AFRIMA president, Dada, thanked the school for welcoming the team and said the motive of AFRIMA in visiting the school was to inspire, motivate and encourage the pupils who would be the future leaders.
He said, “One of AFRIMA’s Corporate Social Responsibility goals is to inspire African youths and raise the consciousness of African identity for growth and development. We cannot waste the future; Africa is not a home of sickness and diseases but the home of culture and ideas, hardworking and hospitable people.
“As long as we have the will and mind to achieve, we will get there. Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can also achieve.”
The AFRIMA President also encouraged the pupils to hold on to their dreams and never give up no matter the prevailing negative circumstances.
While presenting the gifts to the headmistress, Mrs. Sainabou Jobe, Dada expressed opinion that the gifts acted as a symbol of encouragement to the school which recently emerged first place winner in a national government-organized drama and music competition held among schools in the Gambia.
Also in attendance at the event was a delegation from the Gambian National Centre for Arts and Culture (NCAC) whose director, Sheikh Omar Jallow, was once a pupil of the school some thirty-five years ago. The National Youth Council (NYC) of the African Union (AU) was also represented.
The headmistress enumerated on the achievements of the over 35-year-old school and gave account of how it had won various awards as a result of hard work and thirst for excellence. She also encouraged her teachers and students not to rest on their oars.
She thanked AFRIMA, AU and the NYC for their recognition of the school’s excellent results.
Speaking on behalf of NYC, Mr. Abdullahi Faye expressed happiness at AFRIMA’s selection of Bakoteh Proper Lower Basic School in Banjul as well as having the interest of the youth and needy at heart. He also informed the audience that the AU celebrated its 10th anniversary with the acronym, ‘Banjul+10.’
He said, “I thank people from all the countries here today and urge them to always remember the school and render it any help possible because the school had a population of 3, 550 pupils with 132 teachers. This makes it a big task which the government cannot manage alone.”
In the same vein, the pupils showed appreciation to AFRIMA, the AU and other stakeholders present when they presented two brilliant drama sketches on cultural marriage and the transatlantic slave trade. These were followed up with an emotional poetry rendition and some goodbye songs that brought many to tears.
The visit ended with a photo session of the visitors with the staff and pupils of the school.