Army Chief Calls For Training and Capacity Development in Protocol and Liaison Duties For All Personnel

The current security environment is dynamic and characterized by complexity which requires increased liaison with stakeholders at all levels, therefore called for training and capacity development in protocol and liaison duties to facilitate great level of engagement with internal and external partners. 

The Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Faruk Yahaya said this at a maiden edition of the Capacity building Workshop on protocol and liaison duties with the theme, "ENHANCING THE NA PROTOCOL AND LIAISON CAPABILITY FOR EFFICIENT SERVICE DELIVERY" organised by the department of Special Services and Programmes (Army) which took place on Wednesday, 12 April, 2023 at Nigerian Army Resource Centre, Abuja.

Lt General Yahaya stated that the capacity building workshop and protocol and liaison duties is expected to develop the capacity of the Nigerian Army personnel, conduct protocol duty in furtherance of NA strategic and operational objectives.

The workshop is in a bid to enhance the Nigerian Army protocol and Liaison capacity for efficient service delivery and to carry out Nigerian Army mandate professionally and efficiently during Nigerian army international and domestic engagement.

The COAS said the workshop was borne out of the need for more effective coordination of all Nigerian Army Liaison Special programmes as well as other recognised programmes in line with best practices.

The initiative to partner with foreign affairs and other accredited institutions to undertake specific courses for building personnel on protocol, liaison duties in the service is a welcome idea. 

He noted that the Nigerian Army is not and mindful of its core mandate towards national security, "Nigerian Army will continue to act professionally embedded in all components of fighting power to demonstrate that is ever ready to fulfil its constitutional roles in the defense of our dear nation."

Earlier in his welcome address, the Chief of Special Services and Programmes (Army), Maj Gen Emeka Onumajuru stressed that the noble idea of holding the workshop is long overdue considering the transformation and reach of the NA under the leadership of COAS, this will form increase interface with internal, external towards addressing national and international security challenges.

He noted that the purpose of this workshop is to build the capacity of personnel across the board on protocol and liaison duties. Other pillars of the Capacity building programme include attendant of Short protocol courses at the Nigerian Foreign service academy and also International conferences and seminars. 

Maj General Onumajuru said that the Department of NA Protocol and liason Services and Programmes was established in January 2022 and has remained focused on improving the directorate of protocol to be able to carry out his mandate professionally and efficiently.

"It would be recall that in February 2022, the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Faruk Yahaya directed the establishment of the Directorate of Protocol Special Services and Programmes Army Headquarters, serves with responsibility of Liaison with Command Guest Houses, Stakeholders, coordination and monitoring Nigerian Army programmes in conjunction with Army Headquarter Departments and providing protocols and Liaison functions, among others.

This establishment Nigerian Army design to uphold international best practices and regulations in dealing with diplomatic protocol, precedent and etiquette. Its also align with COAS vision. The department has so far been able to take laudable initiative in as a position of NA protocol and liaison duties for optimal performance in support for operation roles.

Keynote Speaker Ambassador Jonathan Oluwole Coker, while the session was moderated by Brigadier General MK Sanda with two discussants namely; Ambassador SA Oyeteru, Ambassador Ibrahim Zanna.

Keynote lectures from day 1 to 3 was on Building Strong protocol capability for enhanced military diplomacy and National security, the strategic options for the NA. There was lecture on Introduction to Basic Etiquette, Managing protocol functions and Liason Duties, professional presence, that is, the Protocol Officer.

Day 2 lecture is on Order of precedence and Symbols of National sovereignty, organizing official Luncheon, Dinner and Diplomatic reception, Arrival and Departure formalities and Airport courtesies, then excellence in the workplace and the final day which is day 3 lecture, participants were trained on The Art of Public Speaking.

The Guest Speaker, Ambassador Jonathan Oluwole Coker, speaks on "Building Strong Protocol Capacity for Enhanced Military Diplomacy and National Security" while participates drawn from Nigerian Army divisions, departments, and units.

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