By Binta Jaiteh
Momodou Badjie, National Security adviser Office of the President told the lawmakers that the security sector reform is a brainchild of President Adama Barrow, that when the government took over office, there has been a lot of issues relating to abuses and instances where security was not seen to be democratic and adhering to rule of law.
Badjie said due to that, and for him to govern this country, he needs to have a comprehensive reform and that was where the TRRC and Janneh commission came about.
He added that he prior went to New York City and made a presentation where he requested for support from the United Nation, adding that when doing a security reform, the father of security sector reform is always the United Nation with their powers, he informed National Assembly select committee members on defense and security at the Parliament in Banjul.
He pointed out that when he got the green light, he formed a steering committee including five ministers, however, with the need to have a comprehensive assessment of the situation that was conducted by instituting technical working groups and the membership came virtually through all the security institutions and NGOs.
“I came around September 2017 and was appointed as the security adviser, and to lead that process, we had a quick assessment through the length and breadth of this country. In December 2017 we presented a report that included a lot of abuses, obsolete frameworks and other things which were deficit malfunctions. By then, it will be difficult to look at it as one entity, so we decided to divide it into five thematic areas, basically the first area looked at post authoritarian regimes,” he said.
He lamented that the National Security Council is the apex decision making body on national security matters. ‘’If you look at those meetings which is headed and chaired by the President, which include the Vice President , Minister of Defense and Interior , National Security Adviser, Chief of Defense Staff , Director of NIA and IGP, we sit every Monday for a briefing to look and discuss current affairs’’ he said
He revealed that the office was established purposely to support the executive in coordinating the activities of security in the country, adding that they are currently not yet enacted by the assembly, but the process was on and very soon the Minister of Justice will present the bill.