The training was co-sponsored by GRA, the Accountant General Department and the National Audit Office.
The five days training was organised by Diplomacy-Etiquette and Protocol Consulting (DEPC), and is currently underway at the Ocean Bay Hotel.
The training attracted over twenty participants from various government departments.
Declaring the forum open, Commissioner General GRA Darboe underscored the significance of the training, while describing it as long overdue.
According to the GRA boss, the observance of certain protocols is necessary for the proper functioning of institutions and maintaining relations with other countries.
He added that it is in recognition of this fact that GRA decided to send some of its staff to undergo this very important training.
“We believe that this training will equip our staff with the necessary skills and competences required for diplomatic engagements with sister countries,” he said, adding that GRA is one of the few national institutions that maintain a diplomatic presence in a foreign country.
He said by the nature of the GRA’s mandate, especially international and cross border trade, “we are required to maintain diplomatic relations with neighbouring countries and treaty partners and where possible establish a diplomatic presence.”
The GRA boss further stated that the training would therefore “provide our staff with the necessary skills and competence to handle our diplomatic engagements.”
“We as revenue officers are not just required to be honest and disciplined, we are also required to be courteous and diplomatic in our engagement with taxpayers and the citizenry at large” CG Darboe further posited.
CG said it is important that the participants take the training very seriously, while hoping that at the end of the training, the participants would have acquired the requisite skills and competences to handle high level diplomatic engagements on behalf of their respective institutions without any hitch or embarrassment, and for the Gambia as a state.
He added that the training would also expose the participants to the ceremonial aspects of protocols, procedure, behaviour, etiquette, rules of order of precedence and dress code.
Also speaking, former ambassador, Ebrima Ousmane Ndure, chief executive officer of Diplomacy Etiquette and Protocol Consulting (DEPC) and also former Gambian ambassador to Senegal, Burkina Faso and Mali, said the training will cover the art of protocol and diplomacy.
CEO Ndure said among the expected outcomes of the training were: building self-confidence when meeting/ dealing with VIPs; enhancing professional image and to execute duties with excellence in a cross-cultural situation.