Thursday, March 18, 2010

Tourism minister visits Kankurang Centre

NEWS BANJUL, THE GAMBIA(MB)- Mrs Fatou Mass Jobe-Njie, the minister of Tourism and Culture Tuesday visited the Kankurang Centre under construction at Janjangbureh, Central River Region (CRR).

The visit was preceded by the official opening of a three-day workshop for school children by the minister, organised by the National Centre for Arts and Culture (NCAC) in collaboration with UNESCO through its regional office in Dakar. During the visit, Minister Mass Jobe-Njie, accompanied by Momodou Joof, the executive director of NCAC, was led on a conducted tour of the Centre by Honourable Foday Jibani Manka, the National Assembly member for Janjangbureh who is also the chairman of the Kankurang project.

Speaking at the ceremony, Minister Jobe-Njie said: “We in The Gambia are very proud that an important facet of initiatory rite among the Mandinka-speaking people have been so proclaimed a masterpiece that the world body for culture – UNESCO, sees the need for its safeguard, and thus providing funding for not only the creation of a national Kankurang education centre cum museum to be located here in Janjangbureh at the famous site for initiation (Tinyansita). Also, this will initiate a series of educative and awareness-raising for young school goers, with a view to imparting knowledge and skills in them regarding various Kankurang traditions that we have in this country.”

During the course of the three-day workshop, topics such as history and significance of the Kakurang tradition; Kukurang types, costumes, functions and performance; Kankurang and the environment; preserving the plant species that provide the materials for Kankurang costume; tradition versus modernity; Kankurang and the forces of change; and the practical exercise were discussed.

The ceremony was attended by Alhaji Ganyie Touray, the governor of the CRR, Momodou Ida Bah, the deputy governor of CRR and Alhaji Momdou Sanyang, the director general of GRTS and a board member of the NCAC.

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