Gambia's President, Adama Barrow, has announced the launching of a project aimed at reforming the security apparatus of a country that has just emerged from 22 years of brutal dictatorship which poses a challenge that the EU Ambassador described as "deep-seated" to signal what's ahead for the new administration.
The statement by President Barrow recognizes the fact that he's inherited "a deeply politicized" security apparatus that is "not responsive to the needs of the people."
He expressed the hope that a reformed security force will be "effective and accountable...under democratic control with full respect for human rights, the rule of law and fundamental principles of good governance."
When the reform process is complete and in full implementation phase, he expects the outcome will enable The Gambia to, once more, "take charge of its own security and destiny."
The ECOWAS Ambassador warned the authorities that they cannot afford to fail in the endeavor and that a successful exercise in The Gambia will most certainly be replicated elsewhere in a region has experienced a period of instability in the last couple of decades.
A multidisciplinary task force comprising Defense, Interior, Foreign Affairs, Finance, Justice and key reform partners, namely United Nations, African Union, ECOWAS and the European Union.