Following presentation of his Letters of Credence, Ambassador Bah conveyed fraternal greetings and best wishes from His Excellency President Adama Barrow and the people of The Gambia to the President of the United States of America, Honourable Joseph R. Biden and the people of the United States of America.
Ambassador Bah used the opportunity to inform President Biden that he was aware of the rich legacy and fruitful bilateral relations between The Gambia and the United State of America. He observed that the two countries have enjoyed cooperation in socio-economic development, through USAID, the Peace Corps and other American institutions. Ambassador Bah said The Gambia and the United States have enjoyed political and diplomatic partnerships and together the two countries are strong allies in the fight against terrorism. He pledged to assiduously work with the Biden Administration to further deepen, broaden and strengthen the partnership that exists between the two countries.
He said the two countries are traditional allies based on common values of respect for human rights, dignity of our people, sanctity of life and the rule of law. This, Ambassador Bah said is one of the main reasons that made the United States to take the frontline role in supporting The Gambia during the struggle to liberate the country from a brutal dictator, who had hijacked The Gambia and subjected the people to twenty-two years of tyranny and misrule.
Ambassador Bah hailed the role played by the US Government in successfully seeking forfeiture of the US property of the former Gambian President, Yahya Jammeh. The Ambassador pointed out that this is a clear indication of the support of the US Government to The Gambia, adding that the support would never be forgotten by President Barrow and the people of The Gambia.
Ambassador Bah re-echoed call by President Adama Barrow for global peace and understanding, and sought strengthened partnership from the American leadership to defeat intolerance and terrorism. He renewed The Gambia’s support for the position of the United States for the political class, everywhere in the world, to take the lead by espousing norms and practices that encourage inclusiveness and fair play.
On the Millennium Challenge Corporation award of a threshold programme to The Gambia, Ambassador Bah said the award is not only seen as an economic assistance, but also as a show of confidence in the leadership of The Gambia which he said is ready, able and willing to re-engage with the United States as a strategic partner.
On his part, President Joseph R. Biden said he was delighted to welcome Ambassador Bah and expressed his resolve to work with him to advance common agenda and deepen bonds between our two countries. He extended condolences on the passing of the late Ambassador Fadera whose dedication he said brought relations between the two countries even closer.
President Biden recalled that six years ago the people of The Gambia stood together, united in their calls for freedom. He said today, The Gambia stands proudly among world’s democracies, working every day to build prosperity and opportunity for its people.
President Biden said the arrival of Ambassador Bah in Washington signifies the continued steadfast friendship between our nations and marks our enduring, shared commitment to the principles of democracy, human rights, and economic prosperity.
The US President said The Gambia is a young democracy, but has proven to be a world leader in protecting the vulnerable. President Biden noted that The Gambia’s pursuit for justice in the wake of grave human rights abuses is a beacon for all those yearning for a voice and for accountability. President Biden pointed out that the Gambian people have made it clear that they would never again accept a government that denies them dignity, respect, and fundamental rights. He said the United States has stood beside The Gambia throughout the transitional justice process, and will remain beside The Gambia.
President Biden said our two countries stand united in the face of shared challenges, rising cost of living, and global health threats. He observed that, however, difficult those obstacles may be, progress comes only with close cooperation and by unlocking the potential of our talented and diverse people to innovate and overcome. He said the US sees opportunities to collaborate with The Gambia on common interests in promoting economic growth and development.