In a bid to solidify the 45th friendly relationship between the Peoples republic of China and the Government of Sierra Leone, a twenty – one had arrived in Freetown to mark what was described as a epoch making week long programme. The University of Sierra Leone formed the center of the commemoration by organizing series of Chinese cultural performance in Freetown. The Chinses cultural performance group arrived on 20th September, 2016 and was received by the deputy Vice Chancellor of Fourah Bay College Professor Sahr. P. T Gbamanja at the Bintumani Hotel along the sea line of Freetown.
The delegation comprises of twelve Chinese students and nine lecturers of the Gannan Normal University in China.
Public Relations Officer of the delegation Professor Hande Liu said the visit and cultural performance would advance the diplomatic relations between the two countries whilst adding value to the mutual collaboration between the University of Sierra Leone and the China Republic especially in exchange programmes. Professor Liu said the Chinese were in the country to learn the languages and culture of Sierra Leone. “The visit was mutually beneficial especially between the Ganan Normal University and the University of Sierra Leone” as both Universities will continue their students exchange programmes” Professor Liu disclosed that the two institution would have to establish a corporate research institution between the two institutions.
Kenneth Osho a Senior Lecturer and local Director of the Confucius Institute of Fourah Bay College said that the university decided to invite some senior lecturers and students of Ganan Normal University to have a first-hand experience with officers of the University of Sierra Leone. He noted that the programme was conducted in line with the Chinese Embassy in Sierra Leone and the Confucius Institute in Fourah Bay College. He underscored the benefit of the friendship of both institutions and continue to foster and promote good ties between them.
As part of the friendship five students from Fourah Bay College had left for advanced studies at the Ganan normal University in china whilst others are enlisted to further their postgraduate studies in the same University.
The local Director said that the Confucius Institute, FBC said the Chinese language had been introduced in the curriculum of the University of Sierra Leone for students to offer it as a course during their first and second years of studies at Fourah Bay College and expressed hope that by the end of 2018, the Chinese language would become a major course in the curriculum of the University of Sierra Leone.
While in Freetown, the delegation held a cultural performance at the National Conference hall and the Mary Kingsley Auditorium at Fourah Bay College. They also paid a courtesy call on the Acting Vice Chancellor of the University of Sierra Leone, Prof. Ekundayo J.D Thompson at his Tower Hill office where they signed the official visitors book of the University band the Ministry of Education science and Technology.
Meanwhile, plans are under way to introduce the teaching of the Chinese language at the Milton Margai College of Educational and Njala University.
Contributed by Munda Rogers