By: Muhammed Lamin Drammeh
A vocal and renowned youth activist in the Central River Region, Muhammed L. Saidykhan has said that the rural communities in the Gambia have been marginalised from the national awards staged by different institutions in the country in recognizing the efforts of different people in different sectors.
He said this as a group of young rural descendants begin preparations for the first-ever rural awards night in The Gambia.
“Rural Gambia has been marginalised for far too long especially in awards and in recognising the efforts of Gambians. Almost 90 per cent of awards in this country have marginalised the work of people in the rural Gambia”, he claimed.
Speaking to the Fatu Network, Saidykhan explained that young people and women in the rural parts of the Gambia are doing well in the national discourse on agriculture, sports and entrepreneurship. He outlined that there are lots of vulnerabilities in the youth folks in rural Gambia compared to those in urban areas. He described the alleged marginalisation of rural people in national awards as unfair.
Saidykhan further argued that almost 90 per cent of those making waves in the national discussion are all from rural Gambia. He said women in rural Gambia are supplying markets in the urban areas with their products from gardens he rural Gambia.
Amidst the claimed marginalization of rural people in national awards organised by different groups, a group of young people in rural Gambia are bracing up for the first rural night awards in October this year.
Muhammed L. Saidykhan told the FatuNetwork that the composition of a group dubbed ‘working group’, are young people from the rural areas who are ready to organise the events in acknowledging the efforts of people in the rural areas contrary to national awards.
“The composition is brilliant. They are young people that you will see on the spectrum of national discourse in education and development”, he said.
He explained that this ‘working group’ will roll out their plans on the 24th of this month to start mobilising resources.
He added that everything will be done in rural settings. According to him, the awards will start from region 2 to 6.
Saidykhan further encouraged young people and women in the rural communities to continue delivering the goods.
He equally told TFN that they are not into any sort of competition with those in the urban areas but standing for justice and making the voices of rural people heard.