Malawi president Peter Mutharika on Friday commissioned 45 Cadet Officers of the Malawi Defence Force (MDF) at the Malawi Armed Forces College (Mafco) in Salima where he hailed the MDF for its integrity, hard-work, unity and patriotism.
Mutharika said MDF soldiers have shown particular brilliance in peacekeeping missions, a thing which he said has earned them international acclaim.
Currently, over 800 MDF soldiers are part of the United Nations Force Intervention Brigade that is fighting rebels in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The brigade that comprises soldiers from Malawi, Tanzania and South Africa is being commanded by MDF officer Brigadier General Vincent Nundwe.
Mutharika also admitted that he was aware that MDF is facing a number of challenges which he promised to address.
For a long time, the most prevalent challenge which security organisations like the Malawi Police Service and MDF face is that of lack of decent accommodation.
Mutharika also paid tribute to the eight female soldiers who had successfully completed their Officer Cadet training and were ready to start their duties as some of the most senior ranked in MDF.
“I will ensure that all women in the Malawi Defence Force are given all the necessary opportunities. I should also take this opportunity to urge all our soldiers to continue improving in their duties… The biggest room in the world is the room for selfimprovement,” said Mutharika.
MDF Commander, Ignasio Maulana, thanked government for its continued support to his organisation especially as it strives to train more officers and take part in peacekeeping interventions.
He further challenged the new 45 officers to remember their oath of allegiance and particularly urged those venturing into the profession for the first time to ensure they earn trust among fellow soldiers and commanders.
The event was also patronised by Vice President Saulosi Chilima, Deputy Minister of Defence Malison Ndau, Chief Secretary to the Government George Mkondiwa and Minister of Foreign Affairs George Chaponda, among others.
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