Accolade bestowed on Jammeh
Tuesday, September 04, 2007
Gambia traditional medicine practitioners have honoured President Yahya Jammeh for promoting health, culture, peace, tranquillity and traditional medicine. The practitioners also named the Gambian leader ‘father of traditional medicine’ for his achievement in the field of health and medicine.
In a citation presented to the Gambian leader by Baboucarr BS Sillah, Programme Manager of the National Traditional Medicine Programme at the Department of State for Health and Social Welfare, the Gambian traditional medicine practitioners acknowledged numerous achievements under the leadership of President Jammeh.
The full text of the citation reads:
It is indispensable to state that the President’s interest and promotion of culture has rekindled the spirit of cultural awareness in all Gambians, Africans, as well as the diaspora, which invariably has made our country a shining example of cultural revivalism.
Traditional medicine, being an integral component of our cultural heritage and health system which inadvertently are priorities of His Excellency, has promoted the urgency in traditional healers to bestow on him the honour of fatherhood of the medical discipline: since his assumption to power in 1994, Gambians and non-Gambians alike can bear testimony to the gigantic strides his government has taken directly or indirectly in sustaining and promoting traditional medicine. Notable among His Excellency’s contribution to this noble, old-age-cultural heritage and intrinsic value of the Gambian society are as follows:
• His Excellency’s government rapid respond initiative in the control of the infestation of locust in The Gambia by aerial spraying, which in effect has saved flora and fauna from wanton destruction and our populace from unprecedented famine.
• The establishment of the National Traditional Medicine Programme, with an operational budget line in the recurrent budget, to serve as the government for the promotion, regulation and coordination of traditional medicine and traditional medicine practitioners.
• The controlling of mental health and alleviation of the suffering of mental patients by providing annual allotment through the Department of Social Welfare to renown traditional mental healers for the maintenance of their resident patients.
• Through this ingenuity, love of nature, and the zeal to rejuvenate our landscape and combat deforestation, His Excellency the President, imported adopted and restored in his zoo park local and alien plants, and animal species, threatened with extinction despite the climatic and environmental variance between The Gambia and their places of origin.
• The construction and funding of the first traditional medicine clinic by the Social Development Fund in Berending in North Bank Region, construction of traditional medicine clinic in Kanilai and the laying of the foundation of the Academy of Science and Technology are some of the edifice symbolic of His Excellency the President’s promotion of health and cultural heritage.
• In the year 2003, the National Assembly members accented to the enactment of Copyright Bill, an indication of his government’s recognition and guarantee of the intellectual property rights of all creative Gambians, of which traditional healers are no exception.
• Most recently, His Excellency’s invention of medicament for the treatment of HIV/AIDS, asthma and hypertension with traditional means has once again vindicated the potency of traditional medicine in medical science.
Notably, His Excellency’s cure, compassion and intimacy with patients has grossly destigmatised AIDS in our community.
• To crown his contribution to health, His Excellency introduced a university to upgrade the standard of education of Gambians and improve their health and well being with the inclusion of a faculty of medicine in his great citadel of learning.
Your Excellency, President Alhaji Yahya AJJ Jammeh, with due honour, respect and appreciation of your government’s effort in promoting traditional medicine, we the traditional healers of the Gambia hereby implore you to grant this certificate of merit and adoption as the father of traditional healers of the Republic of The Gambia.
Signed on behalf of the Traditional Healers of the Republic of The Gambia 30th Day of
August 2007 by:
Author: Written by Ousman Darboe
Source: The Daily Observer Newspaper