By Mustapha Jallow
A serving member of the Gambia Armed Forces (GAF), Captain Alhagie Ndogo has successfully built a traffic robot which was launched yesterday, at the Yundum Barracks. The robot was displayed in the form of an exhibition ceremony as senior non commissioned officers attend the ceremony. At the gathering senior military commanders and other members of the GAF were present.
Reflecting on how the robot was built, Capt. Ndogo said that he started this project since 1994. He said that it took him over one year to build the robot and the materials cost him at last D10,000 from his salary. He described the lack of financial support from the government and said he used to deduct from his salary to finance his project and therefore thanked his family members for their patience and the support they have given with him.
‘‘I have started working on this project since 1994 and since then I’ve been supporting myself because I used to deduct my monthly salary and if I have any assistance from anybody, I will build another one,’’ he said.
He said that he has built so many things such as a one passenger vehicle, air droid, four barrel gun and now a traffic robot. ‘‘The military is not about only carrying guns because we have knowledge and skills that we use to be creative and inspire many security personnel,’’ he said.
Colonel Sait Njie, the Commanding Officer of 1st Infantry Battalion at Yundum Barracks has acknowledged the inspiration and hard work of Capt. Ndongo and quickly said that one of his junior officers has successfully built a giant robot. He said that the officer has started building this traffic robot some time ago. ‘‘This simply means that our armies are moving forward, that we are acquiring education which nobody thought before because in the past people thought that those joining the army are the ones who had poor grades or fail their exams but I’m thankful that my soldiers are taking education very seriously and have gained skills,’’ he said.
In conclusion, he said that the GAF will support Capt. Ndongo’s project to come up with whatever invention he want to make. He said that he had an open door policy since he took up the Battalion position that his doors are open for the soldiers who had skills etc. ‘‘If a soldier wants to see or have an important thing to discuss with me, he/she does not have to go through any protocol. Any initiative that is good for the unit or for the GAF, come forward we will help you with our little resources,’’ he said.