The mother of the Gambian Struggle and former vice president of the nation Her Excellency Mrs. Fatoumatta Tambajang in her emergency response to the call to address the state of human trafficking in Africa via cultural reformation in Abuja 25th September 2018 at the African Women Intercultural Dialogue showed truly that passion is the mother of all accomplishments and that she is truly a model in words and deeds when it comes to socio-cultural and economic development of the African continent.
Aja Fatoumatta Tambajang records as an astute activist committed to overhauling the niggling process withholding the acceleration of Africa’s renaissance in the current era is impeccable , married at 16yrs age because of the extremity of cultural practices hinged on religion at that time in Gambia, yet against all odds, she returned to school after giving birth to pursue her dreams with an impressive courage and dedication , she refused to be content with just marriage knowing that she has other roles to play as a woman that is more than just getting married and raising children and as God may have it, providence took her all the way to the position of vice president from her humble beginnings.
An origin of the town of Brikama, Fatoumata Jallow-Tambang went to Armitage High School, proceeded to the University of Dakar in Senegal and earned her matriculation from the University of Nice, in France. Fluent in both English and French, Jallow-Tambajang later pursued graduate studies at Bradford University, in the United Kingdom.
As a career technocrat, the married 69-year-old clocked decades of experience working with the United Nations Development Programme for 22 years. While at the UNDP she distinguished herself as a dedicated advocate for the cause of women who are generally disadvantaged in The Gambia’s male-dominated society.
Expedition Into Politics
Tambajang was an advisor to Dawda Jawara, the first President of the Gambia, on women’s issues and children’s affairs. She chaired the Gambia National Women’s Council and represented it in the Gambia National Economic and Social Council for six years.
Tambajang served as the Secretary of State for Health and Social Welfare from 1994 to 1995 in the Armed Forces Provisional Ruling Council cabinet. She was one of two female ministers in the cabinet, alongside Susan Waffa-Ogoo. She addressed the International Conference on Population and Development in September 1994 on behalf of the Gambia. She then went on to work for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and in the field of development, including 5 years in war-torn Mano River. In 2001, whilst working in the African Great Lakes, where she became victim of a rebel hostage situation.
Removing Yaya Jammeh After 22 Years In Office as President Of Gambia
The fearless amazon also hatched the perfect plot to oust the former ruler of the Gambia Yaya Jammeh who was in power for 22 years, and led the plot as the leader of the coalition ,succeeding in liberating her nation from a regime that became synonymous with tyranny and naked violations of human rights which meant arbitrary arrests and detentions, summary executions, unexplained disappearances and torture, Mrs. Jallow-Tambajang spent her hard-earned resources touring the United States and other parts of the Gambian Diaspora organizing seminars, conferences and talk shops aimed at convincing her compatriots, rallying them to a patriotic duty toward their homeland, the task of which was to overthrow the system in Banjul by democratic means.
She succeeded with the silent revolution that was accomplished with the ballots and not bullets, which she was eventually paid for with a bad coin by the present administration that she was pivotal in ushering into power. She resigned from the position of vice president when she perceived that the president Mr. Adama Barrow is not ready to heed accordance to the agreement that brought him to power and not wanting to be associated with the new situation opted out with her head held high ,when she noted the behind curtains move of the Barrow administration to send her away on a diplomatic mission.
Invitation to Nigeria as Co chair of the September 25th 2018 African Women Intercultural Dialogue .
When she received the invitation to Nigeria to present a paper and co chair the 2nd African Women Intercultural Dialogue, she felt the tug at her heart on the need to lend her influential voice and make a difference in the most inhumane scourge rampaging Africa and the world at large at this time in our century, the organizers faced with challenges of Inadequate sponsorship told her at the last minute that what they could procure for her was an economy class, she told them not to worry that as a mother, what is of grave concern to her is how to give her voice and accelerate actions to ensure that children of Africa re learns a new means of protecting themselves from becoming victim of the incessant ring of traffickers in their communities and all over the world.
Her presence at the event which was attended by diplomats, non profit organizations, law makers and even primary and secondary school students inspired the participation of Mrs Titi Abubakar founder of Women Trafficking and Child Labour Eradicating Foundation (WOTCLEF) an organisation of almost 20 years fighting the scourge of human trafficking and child labour in Nigeria. Dr Julie Okah Donli the DG of National Agency for Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) ensured that the agency played a pivotal role during the dialogue and also ensured the evaluation and possible implementation of the policies agreed at the intercultural dialogue.
What her Sacrifice Accomplished.
Nigeria that was in tier 2 watchlist of US department of State Trafficking in persons report in 2019, rose higher in ranking in the 2019 report ,thanks to the rave of her participation and wisdomic contributions which went further to enhance the public sensitization on the dangers of trafficking which of course was also complimented by efforts of the Nigerian Government to stem the tide of the crime in the nation. Dr.Julie Okah Donli and the leaders of the National Assembly of that time deserve commendations for their innovative and ingenious leadership acumen and the lawmakers extensive financial support to the agency through budgetary allocations.
Mrs. Jallow further inspired and influenced program coordinators of All Africa Media Network organizers of the African Women Intercultural dialogue into making deductions from nuggets of her wisdom , following her blueprint in their steps towards establishing a non- profit sector continental coalition against trafficking which is being developed for a possible launch at the 2020 African Women Intercultural Dialogue to be held on the 22nd of August in Accra Ghana.
Its unfathomable that a woman of her presidential status and at her age being in her late sixties then could embark on a trip to Nigeria to head an event that she wasn’t paid for and at the expense of her personal comfort Is exemplary and deserves commendation and more honours for showing the younger generation how to be selfless and brave in walking the walk and not just talking the talk. This one act of sacrifice from her indeed multiplied the collective goodness of the African youths that attended the dialogue in 2018.
The African women intercultural dialogue of 2018 held in collaboration with UNWomen ,UNESCO and NAPTIP had other special guests and participants like Sheroes Global Union, Queen Mothers Nana Obaapa Awindor and Nana Anima, members of the council of women societies Nigeria, Miss Edem Attipoe Ghana’s first female Air Marshall,Madam Beatrice Ubeku president West African Women Association (WAWA) an aegis of ECOWAS, Prof. Phillip Ogbonna Founder Soren Kierkegaard Academic Society of Nigeria,Mouna Ahmed President ECOWAS Women Liberia, Faith Igboelli of TVC Nigeria,Amb.Ifeoma Ejiogu, Rasheeda Fagbayi of the Pan Africa Trade Fair among others, the event was sponsored by WOODIN fabrics and Citylights West Africa’s Biggest Lighting Company ,and had Leadership Development Foundation of Kenneth Obiakor as Resource Partners.