Gambia’s Army chief has reminded the Gambia’s 20th contingent heading for the Sudanese troubled region of Darfur, to always remember the principles of integrity, respect for diversity and professionalism as their guiding principles at all times.

Lt. General Masanneh Kinteh made the remarks on Wednesday during the farewell of the Gambian contingent heading for a peacekeeping mission in Darfur, a ceremony presided over by by the Minister of Women Affairs and overseer of the portfolio of the Office of the Vice President Madam Fatoumata Jallow-Tambajang.

The 208 personnel including 12 male officers, 6 female officers and 19 female soldiers under the command of Colonel Musa Trawally are heading to the Sudanese troubled region of Darfur on humanitarian and peace support mission.

The responsibilities of the Gambian contingent still remain the securing of the Mission Headquarters in El-Fasher and the provision of escort duties to UNIMID High Command and visiting VIPs. Other aspects include providing the enabling environment for humanitarian support to Darfurians, on issues such as the resettlement of Internally Displaced People (IDP) and protection of civilian population from all forms of violence.

CDS Kinteh also advised the men and women to work hard to win the hearts and minds of their fellow peacekeepers as well as the civilian population.

“This would require a high sense of commitment and dedication to the service of the mission and the people of Darfur. You therefore, need to stay focus, alert and fit at all times and execute your tasks in a highly professional manner. You need to be tolerant, tactful and polite in the way you relate with your peers from different countries. You must have respect for all those you come in contact with and be willing to  share your experience with your colleagues” he advised.

According to him, the men and women should be part of the solution to the trouble but not the problem and are expected to do everything possible within your limits to help build and keep the peace. He urged them to execute their duties within the amdate of  UNAMID, observing the rule of law and paying due attention and respect for human rights and dignity.

CDS Kinteh further implored on the Contingent to behave professionally and avoid anything that will stain the good name of The Gambia.

“You must respect the religion, tradition and local culture of the host country. Consider the people of Sudan as your own brothers and sisters and treat them with honesty and respect” he concluded.