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Freetown Sierra Leone., Monday 13th September 2021 - Military Student Officers from the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF), the Gambian Armed Forces (GAF), Guinean Armed Forces (GAF) and the Sierra Leone Correctional Service (SLCS), have commenced Senior Command and Staff Training (SCAST), at the Horton Command and Staff College Leicester Square..

The Assistant Chief of Defence Staff (ACDS) Training and Doctrine Brigadier General Christian Fahim Marah on Monday 13th September 2021, in his capacity as Guest of Honour representing the Chief of Defence Staff – RSLAF, gave an opening statement to Thirty-Five (35) Senior Officers attending this years’ Senior Command and Staff Training. In his key note address, he welcomed all those attending the course including foreign students on behalf of the MoD/RSLAF and advised all to take the Course seriously. He emphasised that being part of the Course demonstrates a wonderful relationship between our countries and Armed Forces, a tradition which has been established at the College for years now. The ACDS Training and Doctrine, also mentioned that the divergent perspective Students Officers will bring to the Course are very much appreciated. He added that the Course was designed to provide Student Officers with the advanced familiarity of the full spectrum of duties, which they will be responsible for, primarily that of managing subordinates and coordinating advanced level of operations and tactics at the Senior Officer’s level. .

Additionally, the Guest of Honour stated that this Course also prepares the Student Officers for Senior Command and Staff Courses overseas and helps the MoD/RSLAF in selecting the most suitable officers for Senior Division Courses externally and promotion from Majors to Lieutenant Colonels. The ACDS also, encouraged Students to give their best and to achieve this, he expects them to display among other things, qualities of adaptability to the College’s environment, high sense of diligence, self-application and above all high level of integrity, discipline and moral courage to defend their views. Brigadier General CF Marah ended by advising Student Officers attending the Course to build positive networks amongst themselves in furtherance of effective future collaboration, coordination and cooperation to achieve African integration.

In his welcoming address, the Chief Instructor (CI) Horton Command and Staff College (HCSC), Lieutenant Colonel William Tennyson Pessima, earlier welcomed and thanked all those present and promised them a wonderful time at the College. He assured the Students of the Directing Staff’s continued support at all times. He also noted that the Course is divided to two (2) phases. The first phase spans six weeks and consists of modules in Communication skills, Command, Leadership and Management, Regional Affairs as well as other contemporary issues. These should be delivered by the Directing Staff and Guest Lecturers from the Fourah Bay College (FBC) and the Institute of Public Administration and Management (IPAM).

Furthermore, the second phase of the Course is also scheduled for six weeks and will be strictly for military personnel. It will cover operational planning and exercises up to Division level and beyond. Emphasis will be on the Manoevirst Approach to Warfare, Combat Estimate, Joint Operational Campaign Planning (JOCP), Map Exercises (MAPEX), Tactical Exercises without Troops (TEWT) and Command Post Exercises (CPX). This phase will end up with a final written examination on military knowledge. He also stated that, the |Course will be challenging and stressful but needs time and stress management.

The CI also confirmed that the Course is designed mainly to prepare middle level and Senior Officers with the requisite skills and knowledge to effectively fill Command and Staff appointments at the operational and tactical level in their various institutions. In this regard, he advised students to build up their capacity through interacting with one another. He furthered that, the College is a busy but with an amiable environment. He is therefore expecting Student Officers to have come prepared for the Course and will be integrated into the College family. He stressed that they should make use of their time judiciously because time management is crucial for their success. They will be challenged and stretched up to a breaking point but should not allow the Course to slip through their fingers.

He concluded by encouraging the Students Officers to be punctual and regular throughout the Course as professional ethics is the foundation of Horton Command and Staff College. He also assured the students that the Course will capacitate them with tools to enhance their professional expertise under any working condition. Hence, studiousness, dedication and keen attention to details are the foundation blocks of their success on the Course. He therefore, encouraged the foreign students to explore and enjoy the beauty of Sierra Leone.

Defence Public Relations and Information Department
MInistry of Defence
State Avenue
Tower Hill

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