Nigerian Government Deploys About 200 Soldiers To The Gambia For Peacekeeping Mission

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The deployment was announced by the Chief of Operations, Nigerian Army, Maj-Gen. Boniface Sinjen on Friday, in Jaji, Kaduna State, at the graduation of troops of Nigerian Company 9 Economic Community of West African States Mission in The Gambia (ECOMIG).

The Nigeria Army has deployed no fewer than 197 personnel for peace keeping mission in the Gambia, amidst the insecurity ravaging across Nigeria. 

The deployment was announced by the Chief of Operations, Nigerian Army, Maj-Gen. Boniface Sinjen on Friday, in Jaji, Kaduna State, at the graduation of troops of Nigerian Company 9 Economic Community of West African States Mission in The Gambia (ECOMIG).

The 197 troops began Pre-Deployment Training (PDT) on May 4, at Martin Luther Agwai International Leadership and Peacekeeping Centre (MLAILPKC) Jaji Kaduna State, according to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN). 

Boniface asserted that the PDT is in line with the commitment of the Chief of Army Staff, Lt -Gen Taoreed Lagbaja and the Armed Forces of Nigeria in deploying quality peacekeepers in support of international peace and security. Adding that the training had equipped them with the necessary tactical skills and knowledge required for peace support operations.

He said; “It has prepared you for the protection of civilians and the accomplishment of assigned tasks under the ECOMIG mandate.

“You have learned the importance of teamwork, leadership and cultural sensitivity as well as other factors that would ensure your success in the mission area.

“You have been trained in the latest techniques and procedures for maintaining peace and stability in a complex environment and instilled with the values of discipline, respect for human rights and compassion for the people you are going out there to protect.

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“Your mission comes at a critical time, as The Gambia faces a period of uncertainty and instability. 

“The country’s political crisis has affected the lives of many innocent civilians and their presence will sustain the existing peace and stability to the region.

“Your role is crucial in maintaining peace, protecting lives and promoting sustainable development,” he said.

Sinjen charged the troops to uphold the highest standards of professionalism, discipline and respect for human rights. While he advised them to adhere strictly to the ECOWAS’ mandate, which “guides your mission and ensure that your actions align with the principles of peace, stability and human rights.

”Remember that your conduct will not only reflect on yourselves but also on your country, the ECOWAS region and the international community.

“You are, therefore, expected to approach all interactions with sensibility and respect. Be mindful of the local customs, traditions and socio-political dynamics of the mission area.

”You must remain vigilant in the face of potential security threats and   avoid any actions that may be perceived as insensitive,” he said.

He said the Armed Forces of Nigeria had zero-tolerance on sexual exploitation and abuse in line with United Nations’ policies.

”Therefore, any form of sexual exploitation and abuse will be met with severe consequences.

“As ambassadors of the armed Forces of Nigeria and our great nation, you must uphold the esteemed values and enviable image of this country,“ Sinjen said.

Earlier, the Commandant of MLAILPKC, Maj-Gen. Ademola Adedoja, said the six weeks training had been intense, comprehensive, and was conducted in line with the Standard UN Core Pre-Deployment Training Modules.

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Adedoja said the PDT was to equip the earmarked unit with the requisite skills and knowledge to function effectively and efficiently in their deployment to the Gambia.


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