Zimbabwe troops deployed to Malawi from today for a two-week-long SADC peacekeeping preparatory exercise.
The group comprises members of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services, Zimbabwe Republic Police, as well as those from other Government departments.
Commander Zimbabwe Defence Forces, General Philip Valerio Sibanda, urged the contingent to be good ambassadors, Speaking during a send-off parade at One Commando Regiment last week,
He said the exercise would prepare the participants to adjust to modern-day complexities associated with peacekeeping operations.
“The Command Post exercise aims to highlight to you some of the complexities associated with a modern-day peace support operations scenario,” said Gen Sibanda.
“The desire for integrated training within the context of a SADC standby force enhances cohesion and reduces confusion within a multinational force in the event of a need for a rapid response.”
Gen Sibanda urged the participants to display flawless discipline during the exercise since their actions would impact on the whole country.
“The exercise you are going to participate in is a SADC regional level; hence it calls for a high standard of discipline, self-motivation, hard work, initiative and full individual commitment, as your performance will reflect on our nation’s level of skills and knowledge preparedness,” he said.
“The ever-changing complexities like conflicts have transformed from the traditional peacekeeping of yesteryear to the multi-dimensional and high-bred missions of today.
“It is in this context that international, continental and regional peace support operations now need a coordinated, harmonised and integrated approach to bring about cohesion in the execution of the tasks.”
Gen Sibanda said joint training programmes among regional forces was paramount in achieving peacekeeping goals.
“Continued joint training amongst regional forces is, therefore, very necessary to achieve the desired goals of these missions,” he said.
“This Command Post Exercise is one such mechanism and an opportunity for you to understand the concept of peace support operations.
“I, therefore, challenge you to gain as much knowledge as possible by exchanging ideas and learning from those participants with more knowledge and skills than yours.
“When you come back (from Malawi), I expect you to have a wider and broader understanding of peace support operations.”
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