Tuesday, May 15, 2012
Fans fainted on Friday as they caught a glimpse of famous Senegalese wrestler Balla Gaye II who arrived to a heroic welcome at the Banjul International Airport. Balla, who was invited by Gambian Kora maestro Jaliba Kuyateh for the launch of his new album was greeted by thousands of fans.
The wrestling icon coincidentally met with the minister of Youth and Sports, Honourable Alieu Kebba Jammeh –who was on the verge of going out of the country on an official mission- shortly after completing airport arrival procedures. The minister expressed his sincere thanks and gratitude, as well as commending the efforts of the famous wrestler. He also pleaded with the Senegalese wrestler to support in any way he can to move Gambia’s wrestling forward.
Balla was mobbed by fans and admirers, making it impossible for him to go out and see them. The security officers laboured to create a safe passage for him, forcing the guests to return to the VIP lounge, where an open top car was brought to take him to Senegambia. At Senegambia a large crowd gathered that only dispersed after appeals from members of the welcome party and the security.
Speaking to this reporter shortly after his arrival, Balla Gaye II said he was amazed by the hospitality that the Smiling Coast has accorded to him as well as the love shown him by Gambians.“I am very happy to be here and I thank all my fans, my host Jaliba and of course President Jammeh,” he said.