Special Forces at GAF - as 2008 bill amended to create new units
Wednesday, April 09, 2008
Following the amendment of The Gambia Armed Forces (GAF) Bill 2008 on Monday at the National Assembly, three new special units - The Republican Guards, The National Guards and Special Forces will now be created at GAF to expand its definition.
The creation of these units within GAF, is prompted with the present day security threats characterised by terrorism, armed robbery, cross-border crimes and other social ills that not only threaten the peace and security of this country, but the continent as a whole.
Cognisant of this pervasive phenomenon, the government defence policy articulates the importance of creating efficient and professional units within the Gambia Armed Forces to adequately address issues relating to peace and security.
Presenting the bill before NAMs for amendment, Dr Aja Isatou Njie-Saidy, Vice President and secretary of state for Women's Affairs who deputised for President Yahya Jammeh, who is also the Commander-in-Chief of The Gambia Armed Forces, said since social development and economic prosperity can only be attained where peace and security reigns, government recognises the solid effect that a well recognise, equipped professionals and efficient armed forces could have to the national endeavours in achieving the aspirations of the Gambian people.
According to her, the present day security threats characterised by terrorism, armed robbery, cross-border crimes and other social ills that not only threaten the peace and security of this country but the continent as a whole. She noted that the existing units of The Gambia Armed Forces were thus created to safeguard the environment within which the promotion of national interests could prevail.
VP Njie-Saidy further stated that, while operating under the pillars of efficiency, professionalism as well as proportionality, the existing units of The Gambia Armed Forces continually face unpredictable regional and global security threats and challenges characterised by terrorism, trans-national organise crimes, armed robbery and other social ills that could pose threats to the peace and stability of this nation.
"The contemporal regional and global security environment requires therefore, global security counter measures particularly to tackle and tamper the emergence of international terrorism, armed robbery, trans-national organise crimes and other threats to national peace, security and stability" she said.
She then noted that, the foregoing entails the setting up of the specialise units within the Gambia Armed Forces, thus, expanding the operational spectrum and character of the Gambia Armed Forces.
She added that, the amendment seeks to therefore, amend the GAF Act by expanding definition of the Gambia Armed Forces to include specialise units such as the Republican Guards, the National Guards and the Special Forces.
This bill she went on, will further provide for the appointment of commanders for the control of the newly created forces and also gives them all the powers and privileges of the existing units of The Gambia Armed Forces.
Supporting the amendment, Bekai Camara, NAM for Wuli East, suggested for a more stronger military-civil relations so as to help the army get the full support of the communities.
Hon. Sellu Bah of Basse and Sedia Jatta of Wuli West all supported the amendment.
Author: by Alhagie Jobe