The objectives of this paper are to address key questions about the knowledge and promotion of Islamic finance in Sub-Saharan Africa. The authors argue that the strategy for promoting Islamic finance, dominated by banking, is through a “top bottom” approach, focused on a minority and not on the vast majority (bottom up) who do not know much about this mode of finance. Through a case study of banking in The Gambia, the study employs statistical surveys and economic and financial analysis, in order to achieve its objectives. Our empirical findings show very little knowledge about Islamic finance, the dominance of the conventional banking system and policies over the Islamic. Evidence, based on financial soundness analysis, shows that the country’s only Islamic bank is doing better or equal to the conventional banks in the country, according to most of the indicators.