The Defense boss acknowledged the historical role ECOWAS has played over the years in impacting the development of the Liberian Defense Sector. The Defense Minister thanked the ECOWAS Commission for the support to regional partners who are contributing to the professionalism of the Armed Forces of Liberia through the ECOWAS Advisory and Training Team.
Minister Samukai further thanked the visiting ECOWAS delegation for the slot given to Liberia to serve within the ECOWAS Training Department in Abuja, Nigeria.
Minister Samukai made these assertions when the Vice President of the ECOWAS Commission, Dr. Edward David Singhatey, accompanied by Ambassador Tunde O. Ajisomo, Special Representative of the President of ECOWAS Commission in Liberia; Sampson Eyekosi, Program Officer, Strategic Movement; and Isaias Barreto da Rosa, Commissioner, in charge of Telecommunication & Information Technologies, paid a courtesy call on him at his Barclay Training Center office on the United Nations Drive in Monrovia, on Monday 28 August 2017.
The purpose of the visit was in furtherance of ECOWAS’ commitment to Liberia, specifically to strengthen cooperation with Liberia’s Ministry of National Defense.
Speaking during the visit, Dr. Singhatey, as head of the delegation, praised Minister Samukai and members of the Liberian Defense Sector for the professional management of the Sector over the years.
He further thanked the Ministry of Defense and Armed Forces of Liberia for their preparedness and readiness to host the upcoming Chiefs of Defense Staff (CDS) meeting in Monrovia, from 6 to -8 September 2017.
Touching on the upcoming elections in Liberia, Dr. Singhatey further assured Minister Samuakai of ECOWAS’ preparedness to send long-term and short-term observers to engage the Government of Liberia and all political parties with the aim of conducting free and peaceful elections.
Earlier, Dr. Singhatey, on behalf of the ECOWAS Commission, expressed his condolence for the loss of Colonel Solomon Gonny who served ECOWAS and Corporal Ousman Sheriff, who lost his life in Mali.
The Vice President intimated that by March 2018, the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) will leave and that authorities of ECOWAS are discussing taking over UNMIL residual assets in Liberia.
When this effort is realized, according to the visiting team, it will strengthen the ECOWAS Standby Force for the promotion of peace and security in the sub-region.