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Nigerians among eminent Africans honoured at Security Watch Awards in The Gambia

By Odita Sunday
17 November 2022   |   2:36 am
For their outstanding roles in security, safety, governance and leadership, some Africans have been honoured at the 17th Africa Security Watch Awards and Conference (SWAI), which was held in The Gambia.

[FILES] Gambia’s flag. Photo/JPT

For their outstanding roles in security, safety, governance and leadership, some Africans have been honoured at the 17th Africa Security Watch Awards and Conference (SWAI), which was held in The Gambia. Their assessment covered 2020 to 2021.

Prominent among Nigerians on the honours list included former Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai (rtd); Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Awwal Zubairu; governor of Akwa Ibom State, Emmanuel Udom, current Nigerian Army Chief, Lieutenant General Faruk Yahaya and his Air Force counterpart, Air Marshal Oladayo Amao.
The event held at the Sir Dawda Jawara International Conference Centre in Banjul, offered an opportunity for discussions on current issues that were critical to Africa, especially on the theme: ‘Post-COVID-19: Sustaining Security in Africa.’

Lieutenant General Tukur Yusufu Buratai (retired), spoke on “Counterterrorism and Counterinsurgency Fight in Africa: Causes, Challenges, and Deterrence.”

In its 10-point communiqué, the conference noted that violent extremism and other security challenges are negatively impacting the socio-economic well-being of many parts of the continent, hence the need to tackle them holistically.

It, however, noted that the lack of a unified operational framework, uncoordinated intelligence sharing and diplomatic issues limiting international support have dampened the effectiveness of regional collaboration in Africa.
It added: “Notwithstanding, the gains could be improved upon through the establishment of a unified operational framework that encompasses intelligence, diplomatic, military and economic lines of operation towards combating terrorist activities.

“Regional efforts to fight terrorism and insurgency could be more effective if people shared information and talked to each other in a diplomatic way.”

Also at the Conference and Awards ceremony were the Chairman of the Conference Faculty of SWAI Professor Henri Fouche, the Director General of Gambia’s Immigration Department, Mr. Seedy Touré, who was also an Award winner, a senior researcher at the Faculty of Security and Management Studies, North-West University, South Africa, Dr. Barend Prinsloo, among other distinguished personalities across the African continent.
The Director General of Gambia Department of Immigration, Mr. Seedy Touré, also got Africa’s Golden Star Award for Exemplary Service in West Africa.

Ghana’s Inspector General of Police, Dr. George Akuffo Dampare, was given the Most Innovative Police Chief in West and Central Africa Award; and Gambia’s Inspector General of Police, Abdoulie Sanyang, got the Golden Star Award for Outstanding Police Service in West Africa.
Major General Victor Okwudili Ezugwu, Commander of the Infantry Corps of the Nigerian Army, was equally honoured with an award for courage, commitment, and patriotism.
Other awardees include the Force Commander of the MNJTF, Major General Abdul Khalifa Ibrahim, Theatre Commander of Operation Hadin Kai, Major General Christopher Gwabin Musa, as well as the Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Professor Akin Abayomi, Major General Taoreed Abiodun Lagbaja, General Officer Commanding 1 Division Nigerian Army, and Major General Waidi Shaibu, General Officer Commanding 7 Division Nigerian Army.
Similarly, the Directorate of Public Relations and Information of the Nigerian Air Force was presented with the SWAI Golden Award for Security Information Management in West and Central Africa, while Assistant Inspector General of Police, Eboka Friday.
Brigadier General Lar, and Commissioners of Police Abiodun Sylvester Alabi and Kolo Yusuf were honoured with different categories of awards for a variety of outstanding achievements and contributions to peace and security.