Buratai Warns Army Peace-keeping Unit Against Unprofessional Conducts, Sexual Abuse
Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Tukur Yusuf Buratai, has warned against any act of unprofessional conduct of Nigeria Battalion (NIBATT) 38 United Nations Mission In Liberia (UNMIL). Buratai gave the warning on Friday, while addressing the graduating 700 officers and men of the NIBATT from the Nigeria Army Peace Keeping Centre (NAPKC) in Jaji.
According to him, “I must warn you to avoid untoward incidents that could tarnish the image of the Nigerian Army in particular, and the nation in general. The Nigerian Army will not accept any situation where its troops are seen as soft targets or conducting themselves in unprofessional manner such as trafficking in illicit substances of any kind, including alcohol and drugs, as these practice negate United Nations ethics,” he said.
The Army Chief stressed that the image of Nigeria and its Army, “which is respected the world over, must be protected by its officers and men going for peace keeping in Liberia; must not be found tarnishing the image of the country.”
The Chief of Army Staff, who was represented by the Chief Training and Operations, Nigerian Army, Maj-Gen H. Umaru, said that the graduation ceremony further confirmed the commitment of Nigeria in deploying quality peace keepers as part of its contributions to international peace and security in tune with the policy directive of President Muhammadu Buhari.
“As the Chief of Army Staff, I have been fully briefed on your preparatory activities since the unit was designated for deployment to the UNMIL. The period spent during the pre-deployment training at this Centre of Excellence was aimed at refreshing and polishing your knowledge and expertise in peace support operations,” he added.
Earlier in his remarks, the Commandant of NAPKC, Brig-Gen. A.M. Dauda, explained that the graduands of NIBATT 38 commenced training four weeks ago in preparation for induction into UNMIL. “The training was intensive and comprehensive in line with the UN pre-deployment modules, policy direction of COAS and COAS vision, which is to have a professionally-responsive Nigerian Army in the discharge of its constitutional roles. This must remain in focus throughout the deployment of NIBATT 38 in LIBERIA,” he said.
He explained that under the guidance of the Army Headquarters, the Centre had emphasized on human rights observance, sexual exploitation and abuse, while stressing the need for the graduands to be responsive and professional at all times as they have been well trained and ready to do the nation proud. “You must be robust, aggressive and alert in the discharge of your mandated roles in Liberia,” he charged.