Nigeria to deploy troops to Guinea Bissau

Nigeria has announced plans to deploy troops to Guinea Bissau by the end of this week to provide security in the country as part of its commitment to the sustenance of peace and stability in West Africa sub-region.

The Minister of Defence, Dr Mohammed Bello Haliru announced the plan at the opening of the 30th ordinary session of the committee of ECOWAS chiefs of defence meeting in Abuja.

He announced that the Nigerian troops will be deployed to Guinea Bissau by weekend while troops to be deployed to Mali are on standby.

The ECOWAS Commissioner for political affairs, peace and stability, Salamatu Suleiman, in her presentation, had reminded member states on the urgent need for the deployment of troops to help the transition in Guinea Bissau and Mali. The two countries recently experienced military coup d’états.

Ms Sulieman, informed the committee that funds have been released for the intervention.

The military chiefs of ECOWAS sub-region have pledged commitment to the sustenance of constitutional and democratic governance in West Africa

According to Dr Haliru, the instability caused by internal conflicts in ECOWAS member states is a severe impediment to achieving the desired political and economic development of the sub-region.

The Minister noted that developments in Guinea Bissau and Mali gives cause for concern, as he urged the military chiefs of various countries in the region not to relent in their efforts to ensure that democratic governance are restored in the two countries.

The recent coup in Mali and Guinea Bissau was the crux of discussions at the meeting of the chiefs of defence staff of ECOWAS countries.

The chairman of the committee of chiefs of defence staff, General Soumaila Bakayoko, who spoke in French restated the sub-region’s zero tolerance for coup d’états in the region,

He said that negotiations are in top gear for the deployment of troops to the two countries to maintain law and order and help smooth transition to constitutional rule. A position supported by the Nigerian chief of defence staff, Air Chief Marshal, Oluseyi Petirin.