The Nigerian Army has deployed 197 personnel for a peacekeeping mission in The Gambia.

Boniface Sinjen, chief of operations of the Nigerian Army, announced the deployment on Friday in Jaji, Kaduna, at the graduation of troops of Nigerian Company 9 Economic Community of West African States Mission in The Gambia (ECOMIG).

Sinjen said the mission underscores the commitment of Taoreed Lagbaja, the chief of army staff (COAS), to deploy quality peacekeepers in support of international peace and security.

He said the role of the peacekeepers is crucial to maintaining peace, protecting lives, and promoting sustainable development in The Gambia.

“It has prepared you for the protection of civilians and the accomplishment of assigned tasks under the ECOMIG mandate,” the army chief told the troops.

“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.

“Your mission comes at a critical time, as The Gambia faces a period of uncertainty and instability. Your role is crucial in maintaining peace, protecting lives, and promoting sustainable development.”

Sinjen charged the troops to uphold the highest standards of professionalism, discipline, and respect for human rights during the mission.

He said the armed forces have zero tolerance for sexual exploitation and abuse in line with the United Nations’ policies, warning that “any form of sexual exploitation and abuse will be met with severe consequences”.

(By Claire Mom, The Cable)

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