The Seereer Resource Centre (SRC) and Seereer Radio Podcast

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Cosaani Senegambia (History of Senegambia) : History of Banjul with Doctor Lamin Mbye

January 30, 2016

This audio is in three parts:

Part 1. The late Gambian historian Doctor Lamin Mbye narrates the history of Banjul. Doctor Mbye touches on the meaning of the name Banjul; the families from Goreé and Sierra Leone brought into The Gambia by the colonial authorities to build Banjul (many of whom were from the Aku ethnic group) after they purchased land from the King of Kombo. In this audio, Doctor Mbye supports his narrations by citing written sources (primary and secondary sources) as well as the oral tradition. Some of the notable people mentioned in this audio include Reverend J.C Faye and the 19th-century Gambian merchant Pompey Gaye.

Part 2. Interview of ’El Hadji Mansour Gui of Senegal (Islamic based interview)

Part 3. Summary of the programs by Elhadj Abdoulaye Nar Samba and Moustapha Yade

Area of history : Oral and written history of Senegambia : "Banjul" (The Gambia)

Narrated by : Doctor Lamin Mbye (of The Gambia)

Program : Cosaani Senegambia [History of Senegambia]

Radio station : Radio Gambia (at the time)

Year (or approximate year of recording) between 1973 and early 1975.

Collection : The SRC Collection

Additional information : From the archives of Radio Gambia and Radio Senegal's collaborative program: "Cosaani Senegambia". Courtesy of Onegambia.com. The late Alhaji Alieu Ebrima Cham Joof (also known as Cham Joof) was the Director of Program. The presenters were Alhaji Mansour Njie of Radio Gambia and Ibrahima Mbenga of Radio Senegal. The historian being interviewed is the late Doctor Lamin Mbye of the Gambia. Recorded at Radio Gambia Studios, Bakau, the Gambia. This audio is in Wolof. This audio is part of the Seereer Resource Centre's Collection : The SRC Collection.

Medium : Audio recording

Information about Doctor Lamin Mbye (also known as Professor Lamin Mbye) : Doctor Lamin Mbye was a Professor of History and Social Sciences at the University of Maryland  at Eastern Shore (UMES). His area of interest was African history. He worked for institution from 1986 to 2004. 

His father descended from the Mbye family of Cayor and Walo, and his mother descended from the Jange family of Saluum – one of the Seereer precolonial kingdoms.

After graduating from high school in the late fifties, he worked for the government in colonial Gambia and later managed to secure a scholarship to study in the United Kingdom. He obtained his first degree from the University of Wales and doctoral degree from Birmingham University in England.

"Upon his return to the Gambia in 1969, the Civil Service Commission appointed him as the head of the Information Department where he supervised many of the young Gambians working as journalists in the Gambia News Bulletin and as broadcasters in the newly created Radio Gambia."

Source : Obituary of Doctor Lamin Mbye – "No. 940: Obituary: Professor Lamin Mbye" provided by Professors Sulayman S. Nyang of Howard University  – main informant, and Professor A.B. Assensoh of Indiana University-Bloomington [in] The University of Texas at Austin.

Medium : Audio recording

Subjects covered : History of Banjul, Origin of the name “Banjul”; Goreén families, Sierra Leonean families, British colonialism in The Gambia, Aku people, King of Kombo. History of fanal, History of lanteen, Gambian families, Reverend J.C Faye (member of the Seereer ethic group), Pompey Gaye. 

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Download transcript « Télécharger la transcription » :

Visit the Seereer Resource Centre download page to download a transcript of this audio in English, French, Seereer a Sinig, Saafi-Saafi, Ndut, Sili-Sili, Noon and Laalaa.

Websites :

The Seereer Resource Centre (SRC) - www.seereer.org 


Seereer Radio - www.seereerradio.com


Onegambia.com - onegambia.com


Radio Gambia (now GRTS) - www.grts.gm


Office de Radiodiffusion Télévision du Sénégal (ORTS) - www.rts.sn