Mr. Saikou Ceesay, Communication Officer at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and Gambians Abroad on Thursday October 18, 2018 delivered a moving speech in front of diplomats and public officials at Monterey hotel in Tokyo, Japan.
A total of 32 officers, 27 Foreign Service Officers and 5 Public Officials from all regions of the world are benefiting from intensive 9 months training at Japan Foundation Institute in Kansai, Osaka.
Speaking on behalf of participants, Mr Ceesay said the programme was designed to provide intensive training in Japanese language with a view to developing pragmatic skills and expose non-native public servants to the culture and society of Japan through language courses, study trips and visits, networking and with Japanese families among others.
He said: “The course will facilitate the creation of special and indomitable bonds between the participants which will no doubt be beneficial to our careers as diplomats and public officials, for instance, if we were to be posted in Japan in the near future.”
Mr Ceesay underscored the importance of the language programme. He noted: “It would be remiss of me not to mention the fact that this course facilitates the creation of special and indomitable bonds between participants which will no doubt be beneficial to our careers as diplomats and public officials, for instance if we were to be posted in Japan in the near future.
“Nevertheless, the participants aspire that the skills acquired in this programme will augur well with the strengthening of the bonds and relations between our countries and Japan. I believe that learning the language and about the culture and people will encourage people-to-people contact. This philosophy may be best underpinned by the following quote by Nelson Mandela, former president of South Africa ‘If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head, if you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart’.”
He expressed appreciation to the Government of Japan and Japan Foundation while urging his colleagues to endeavor as they entered the fourth week of their 9-month course.
The ceremony was attended by Her Excellency MS. Toshiko ABE, State Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan, Mr. Tomoyuki Sakurai, Executive Vice President of the Japan Foundation, His Excellency Dr. Asad Majeed Khan, Ambassador of Pakistan to Japan and Guest of Honour and members of the diplomatic corps.
Issued by the Communication Unit of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and Gambians Abroad