13 September 2008 -- UNAMID FC speaks at seminar on peacekeeping in Darfur, King's College, London
On 12 September 2008, General Martin Luther Agwai, Force Commander of the African Union – United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID), leading one of the largest peacekeeping operations in the world, discussed the realities of the ongoing challenges and the activities of UNAMID in Western Sudan at King’s College in London.
General Agwai talked at the Peacekeeping in Darfur and the Complexities of a Hybrid Force seminar organized by the Conflict, Security and Development Group in the Department of War Studies at King’s and chaired by Dr ’Funmi Olonisakin.
Dr Olonisakin has been Director of the Conflict, Security and Development Group, since 2003. Prior to this, she worked at the United Nations Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict (OSRSG/ CAAC), as Adviser on Africa. She comments:
‘General Martin Luther Agwai is believed to have one of Africa’s ‘toughest jobs’'. But Darfur is not his first exposure to a difficult operational environment even if more complex. In Sierra Leone, he was deployed as UNAMSIL’s Deputy Force Commander at the most difficult period in the mission’s history... He played a key role in the successful disarmament of Revolutionary United Front (RUF) combatants and earned the trust of all parties to the conflict.’
General Agwai of Nigeria was appointed in May 2008 by Alpha Oumar Konaré, the Chairperson of the African Union Commission and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. General Agwai had been Chief of Defense Staff of the Nigerian Armed Services since June 2006 and was Chief of Army Staff from June 2003 to May 2006. Prior to that, he served with the United Nations as Deputy Military Adviser from November 2002 to June 2003 and Deputy Force Commander of the United Nations Mission in Sierra Leone (UNAMSIL) from November 2000 to November 2002.