Turkey's Maarif Foundation has expressed its commitment to provide quality education in Senegal with new management of schools that once belonged to the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ).
"We will jointly set up quality education that will strive to best meet everyone's expectations," Mahmut Mustafa Özdil, a board member of the foundation, said late Thursday.
He made the comments at a press conference held at the residence of Turkey's ambassador to Senegal, Nilgun Erdem Arı, focusing on the Maarif Foundation's activities in Senegal, including the decision to overtake the management of FETÖ schools.
Senegal was the first country in Africa that took action against FETÖ schools. Six schools in the country linked to the group were taken over by the Maarif Foundation.
In total, 19 African countries handed over FETÖ schools to the foundation or closed them on Ankara's request.
Özdil said that the foundation plans to start managing the schools next school year. "The conditions are there so that we can offer our entire range extending from preschool to higher education," he pledged.
Reassuring parents fearful of school closures, Özdil said: "There has been a lot of misinformation. … There has never been any question of closure. It is continuity under the supervision of the foundation."
"Our priority is to provide quality services," he added.
On Wednesday, Arı said via the Maarif Foundation that FETÖ had used Senegal as a regional headquarters, adding: "FETÖ's school presence was strong, but the process for [Turkey] taking over FETÖ schools in Senegal is progressing,"
"Our fight with FETÖ started a long time before July 15 [but] only top-ranking officials were told about it. Yet, after the failed coup attempt, the disguised terrorists took off their masks and the parents of students in their schools took the necessary action and cut ties with them," Arı said.