ECOWAS Standby Force urged to discharge professionally

Colonel Major Ollo Alain Pale, the ECOWAS Head of the Peace Support Operations Division (PSOD) has charged the newly deployed POSD and ECOWAS Standby Force (ESF) to discharge their duties efficiently and professionally.

He explained that the ECOWAS Force was a standby arrangement made up of military, police and civilian components and was consistent with Chapter VIII of the United Nations Charter which provided for regional peace and security arrangements.

Col. Maj. Pale stated during a five-day induction and orientation programme for newly deployed personnel of the Peace Support Operations Division (PSOD) and the ECOWAS Standby Force (ESF) which was made available to the Ghana News Agency in Tema.

The training was intended to Strengthen ECOWAS’ mechanisms to promote and maintain peace and stability while focusing on contributing to the readiness of the ECOWAS Standby Force for Peace Support Operations (PSOs) through capacity-building measures for civilian, police and military personnel.

Col. Maj. Pale explained that the induction training was also meant to enhance the knowledge of participants and enable them to settle swiftly into their positions and perform their duties efficiently.

In June 2004, the ECOWAS Defence and Security Commission renamed ECOMOG the ECOWAS Standby Force. The force is made up of highly trained soldiers drawn from national units.

It includes a rapid reaction Task Force troops with the capability to be deployed within 14 days (instead of the 30 days previously planned in line with African Union Standard), whilst the entire brigade could be deployed within 90 days.

Dr. Cyriaque Agnekethom, the ECOWAS Commission’s Director for Peacekeeping and Regional Security (DPKRS), urged inductees to pay attention to the rules and procedures to be presented by ECOWAS service departments to attenuate challenges associated with programme implementation.

The inductees were also encouraged to acquaint themselves with and contribute to the successful implementation of the EPSAO project, which strived to build the capacity of the ECOWAS Commission staff working at the strategic and operational levels of the ESF and with civilians, police and military personnel earmarked for deployment to ECOWAS Peace Support Operations.

Ms. Myriam Wedraogo of GIZ-EPSAO project expressed hope that “the new personnel would strengthen the capacity of the ESF both in numbers and experience in view of improving the readiness of the ESF to be deployed.”

This training was organized with the financial support of the European Union (EU) and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), through the GIZ-ECOWAS Peace and Security Architecture and Operations (EPSAO) project.

Source: GNA

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