By Neneh Galleh Barry
The Vice President and Minister of Women Affairs, Hon Ousainou Darboe who also doubles as Chairperson of the National Security Committee call on all hands to be on deck to support the government in the democratization of the security sector. “We should be ready to give out full commitment and maximum support to the success of our SSR.”
The Vice President was speaking on Tuesday at the opening of a two-day Security Sector Reform retreat for heads of security institutions and senior public servants at a local hotel in Senegambia.
He reaffirmed government’s continued commitment towards the Security Sector Reform (SSR), arguing that it is essential for laying the foundation for a sustainable peace, security, and stability in The Gambia.
The platform, he said, will provide the opportunity to discuss and improve the relationship between security sector reform actors in pursuing meaningful provision of security, good governance and sustainable economic growth.
“The forum will not only enlighten the heads of security institutions and public servants but will also galvanize knowledge through interactive session which the retreat is expected to provide.” VP Darboe said
Dr. Katepa Kalala, the FAO representative on behalf of the UN Resident Coordinator said the ongoing formulation of the (NSP) will go a long way in creating a new sector that is responsive to the security needs of the state and human security of the citizenry under full democratic civilian control.
Despite the above successes, the FAO Chief said many challenges continue to confront the (SSR ) process. There is still additional work to be undertaken to complete both NSP and subsequently a National Security Strategy that will define the strategic vision of the security sector of The Gambia.
Ms. Vabah Gayflor, ECOWAS’s Special Representative to The Gambia, said no nation strive in prosperity and development with the absent of peace, security and stability. She stated that given the challenges facing The Gambia at the end of 22 years of authoritarian rule by the past regime; The administration of President Adama Barrow decided to prioritize a series of reform initiatives for the prosperity of the country.
According to her, there are key weaknesses and challenges identified in the National Security Assessment Report that require immediate attention by the government and its development partners; which must be addressed to facilitate a smooth transformation of the security sector institutions.
The presidential security Adviser Momodou Badjie, said the forum is intended to provide an opportunity and a platform in which they will look at some of the critical issues surrounding the SSR in The Gambia.