A United Nations (UN) military chief, Major General H. K. Anyidoho, has asked African governments to show greater interest in the Darfur crisis.
General Anyidoho, who is a Deputy Joint Special Representative of the African Union (AU)/ United Nations (UN) Hybrid Operations in Darfur (UNAMID), said the political will of African governments to deal with the conflict in Darfur must be further re-inforced by visits and interactions with personnel of the mission in Darfur.
He was addressing 50 Ghanaian and 20 Ugandan police officers at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping and Training Centre (KAIPKTC) in Accra on Monday.
The training is a collaborative effort of the United Nations Department of Peacekeeping Operations and the KAIPKTC. Since March this year, pre-deployment training of UNAMID personnel has been undertaken at the centre with facilitators from all over the world.
The officers will replace others whose duty tour of the region ends in December.
Major General Anyidoho said AU governments had previously lived up to the principle of non-interference in the affairs of member states but they must now adhere to the principle of non-indifference, and no longer be indifferent to dire situations in member states.
In line with this principle of non-indifference, AU governments had committed men and women to help in peace efforts in Darfur.
He said committing men and women to the cause was not enough, and so that had to be accompanied by visits to Darfur by government officials, the leadership of the police and the military whose officers had been deployed there and also facilitators who trained peacekeepers stationed in Darfur.
Giving a background to the conflict, what the officers were to expect and their functions, among other issues, Major General Anyidoho noted that Darfur posed a great challenge to all, but with the commitment of the police, military and other civilian staff of the AU and the UN deployed there, there was bound to be a change.
He, therefore, charged the officers to be committed, act professionally and desist from acts that would undermine the peace process in the area.
He told them that not adhering to a strict moral code could attract expulsion from the mission and that would be an indictment on the country of origin.
Major General Anyidoho, who also interacted with facilitators at the KAIPKTC, a team headed by Chief Inspector Jann Quanz, charged the trainers to endeavour to visit Darfur in order to evaluate their course structure.
He said by visiting the region, they would be able to find out if the training being given to those about to be deployed in the region was in line with practical situations on the ground.
DAILY GRAPHIC, THURSDAY, OCTOBER 23, 2008, PG 32