Salone News

OMFA launches Philadelphia chapter

3 November 2007 at 21:23 | 445 views

By Abdulai Bayraytay

The Old Makeni Franciscans’ Association (OMFA) North America Branch Saturday, October 27th, 2007 launched the Philadelphia, USA chapter with pomp and pageantry at the Parkview Estates in Philadelphia.

In his opening remarks, the guest speaker of the occasion, Abdul C. Turay, himself an old boy, lauded the initiative of launching a chapter in Philadelphia that would encourage the effective participation of alumnus in the Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania states. “This is a novelty and history in the making”, Turay maintained.

In his contribution, Anthony Kamara Jr., one of the brains behind the initiative and acting coordinator said the establishment of an OMFA chapter was borne out of the desire to encourage old boys to always identify themselves with their alma mater irrespective of where they reside in North America. “This is part of the tradition of always keeping the banner high”, the young and vibrant coordinator said.

Mr. Kamara used the occasion to debunk insinuations that the formation of the chapter was to undermine the National Branch in Maryland headed by Mr. Samuel Bassino Kamara. He however expressed disappointment over the conspicuous absence of any member of the executive during the ceremony, noting that “we harbor no ill-feelings for this as nothing will deter the aspirations of forming a chapter in the interest of promoting and encouraging past students to come together in order to help our school in line with the tradition of keeping the banner high. This is the virtue our school motto “in veritate salus (which in Latin means in truth there is salvation) teaches us afterwards”, Kamara Jr. emphatically noted amidst thunderous applauses.

In his contribution, a well-respected alumnus, Mohamed O. Koroma aka M.O. Pratt said in spite of the numerous challenges that such a formation could face in its maiden stages, the optimism is that this would be surmountable. “This challenge will surely be converted to some enviable success as there is always light at the end of the tunnel”, M.O. Pratt concluded.

The ceremony, which attracted twenty-three members, including John Conteh and Alpha Tholley, acting secretary-general and publicity secretary respectively, was climaxed with the singing of the popular school song. The chapter’s next meeting is slated for November 17 this year at 8305 Bustleton Avenue in Philadelphia.

Photo: OMFA members and their kids.