The Nigerian Army has deployed 197 personnel, including 12 officers and 185 soldiers, for peace support operation in The Gambia after a four-week intensive training at the Martin Luther Agwai International Leadership and Peacekeeping Centre, Jaji.
Speaking at the graduation ceremony of the Nigerian Contingent 4 ECOMIG pre-deployment training yesterday, the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai cautioned the contingent to avoid things that could tarnish the image of the Nigerian Armed Forces and the country in general.
Represented by the Commandant, Nigerian Army School of Infantry, Major-General Ali Keffi, Buratai urged the troops to discharge their duties in consonance with the mission's mandate at all times.
He added: "Nigeria's commitment to regional international peace security is something that has been established for a long time and has been ongoing, regardless of the challenges that we have here, we still have a role to play in ensuring stability in our region and the international arena.
"Our challenges are challenges that have been largely curtailed, the Boko Haram thereat has been diminished significantly, we have degraded their capacity and capability to mount any significant operations and right know, I think we are on the up to continue our commitment to the international committee of nations.
"I must also remind you that the rules of engagement in the mission give you the latitude to exhibit utmost professionalism in the discharge of your responsibilities. Additionally, you must respect the culture and religious sensitivity of the people of the host nation and must not involve yourself in the trafficking of illicit substances of any kind such as alcohol and drugs as these negate United Nations ethnics."
He however warned them on the United Nations zero tolerance policy on sexual exploitation and abuse, saying the armed forces and the government would not tolerate contravention of the policy.