GAF’s work is indispensible to national development

By: Omar Wally

The acting director general of the Management Development Institute (MDI) described the work of The Gambia Armed Forces (GAF) as indispensable to national development, adding that in any society, a well-trained and focused armed force is in the best interest of national growth.

Alieu K. Jarju made this remarks on Thursday at MDI, during the closing of a week’s training on ‘Team Work and Diversity Management’ for twenty five middle and senior ranking officers of the Force.

“Whatever you are doing be honest to yourself, to the nation and the continent and the whole world,” Jarju said.

The training was coordinated by Ebrima Ceesay, and bankrolled by the Personal Management Office (PMO). Areas covered during the course of the training included, teamwork in contemporary organisation; managing in a changing global environment; creating sustained high performing teams; contemporary leadership fundamentals, and building effective leadership amongst others.

The aim of the training is to provide the servicemen and women an in-depth understanding of the principals, approaches, information needs, awareness-building techniques, and stewardship required for proper team work and diversity management of human resources.

Jarju said capacity building is a key ingredient for national development as espoused in the national development blueprint of Vision 2020. “It is also a centerpiece for both the Millennium Development Goals and the Gambia’s governance policy as initially promulgated in 1999.”

He added that there is already a policy as well as a national agenda that requires training, skills development and overall capacity building for all sectors of the economy. The completion of a training programme for the Armed Forces, he said is a milestone in the national drive to achieve a better and more secure society.

“As already shared with you by our resource persons, you have to take the next step to implement knowledge gained in your various responsibilities.”

This effort, Jarju added ought to lead to improvements in their daily duties, and personal endeavour. “For us at MDI, we are by default partners with all public and private sector agencies as determined by our statutory mandate.”

Acting DG Jarju assured that his institution will continue to reach out to department heads and civil society institutions to make sure that professional cadres exist in all sectors of the economy to rapidly fuel national development.

Dr. Dawda Fadera, the permanent secretary, PMO, said fundamentally the role of a skillful, talented and dedicated army in the development of any nation cannot be underestimated anywhere in the world.

PS Fadera said being the case, his office in collaboration with MDI found it useful to invest in the training of servicemen and women. “I believe it has been useful for you, from the feedback I got and what you learned here I’m sure you will plough back to your respective offices,” he said.

“Training is important and it will help you achieve your aims in terms of professional growth and in terms of delivery of your duties.”

Colonel Paul Gomez, director of training, GAF, said the training is in line with the vision of their commander in chief to provide an armed force that is well trained and effective to take up its constitutional mandates effectively and efficiently. “I thank MDI for providing the necessary environment and making the training a resounding success.”

Colonel Gomez added that the knowledge acquired will add value to whatever task they are doing in their respective units. He reminded them that their output level is expected to increase, adding that much will be expected from them by their comrades. “Share the knowledge with your peers for organisational success,” he told them.