Guaranty Trust Bank on Wednesday 13 April donated half a million Dalasis to the Ministry of Tourism and Culture. The Money was donated as support for the construction of a Tourist Information Center and the refurbishment of the Kunta Kinteh World Acclaimed Heritage Site in Juffureh.
The project, according to officials is expected to bring about commensurate development in the lives of the local communities and conserve the renowned world heritage site.
Speaking at the presentation ceremony held at the National Museum in Banjul, Baba Ceesay, the Director General of the National Centre for Arts and Culture NCAC explained that the Tourist Information Centre “is a reception centre that will allow visitors to relax, learn about the place, and make a choice on what to do. Hopefully, it will encourage them to spend more time in the vicinity and by so doing, spend resources in the village.”
Mr Ceesay disclosed that the centre is being built with local materials sourced from the vicinity and inspired by traditional building materials. He added that techniques and the labour are also provided by local technicians with support from international consultants.
The CEO of GTBank Gambia Bolaji Ayodele said as a corporate citizen, it was part of GTBank’s responsibility to ‘selflessly’ contribute to such initiatives. He noted that the construction of the Tourist Information Centre and refurbishment of the Kunta Kinteh World acclaimed heritage site in Juffureh was perfectly in-line with the Bank’s corporate social responsibility which was why they Bank did not hesitate to accede to the ministry’s request for the donation.
Mr Ayodele spoke of the importance of tourism to the development of The Gambia saying, “We at GTBank are aware of the importance of tourism to the development of The Gambia which is why we continue to champion electronic banking; an important factor in attracting tourists to the country. You may recall that GTBank was the first bank to enable our ATMs and Point of Sale Terminals for visa and Mastercard transactions. We have a robust internet platform, our Point of Sales Terminals and ATMs are deployed in hotels, restaurants and supermarkets, we have established the first and only electronic branch in country. These technology driven products and services will no doubt contribute immensely to the development of tourism in The Gambia.”
The Minister of Tourism and Culture, Benjamin Roberts, thanked GTBank for the donation, saying “the donation is a demonstration of your commitment to the advancement of humanity.” Mr Roberts announced that his ministry will reward GTBank by according them “exclusivity at the site”