As part of its commitment to CARICOM states, the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) recently provided training for officers and ranks of the St Kitts and Nevis Defence Force (SKNDF).
On August 18th, during GDF’s Senior Command and Staff Course graduation, SKNDF Captain Peter Kayode Sutton, was one who successfully completed the training.
In addition, Sergeants Shayne Mike and Jahmoy Gumbs also completed training on the Drill Instructor Course. Mike and Gumbs are now on attachment to the GDF Training Corps, where they will serve as members of the training staff on the Force’s upcoming second annual Basic Recruit Course, scheduled to commence shortly.
According to the GDF, their colleagues, Warrant Officer Class Two, Mervin Lewis and Sergeants Sherwin Julius and Althea France are currently also students on the Senior Leader Course. Meanwhile, Corporal Desroy Elliot, a trained mechanic and Lance Corporal Melissa Carey, a financial clerk, are on attachment to the GDF’s Motor Pool and Finance Department respectively. Elliot is scheduled to commence training on the Section Commander Course while Carey is slated to train on the Junior Leader Course.
According to the army in a statement yesterday, Captain Sutton spoke highly of his training which stretched back to when he was enlisted as an Officer Cadet back in 1999. “This has not been a strange experience for me. I was able to adjust rather quickly since I am already familiar with the GDF and its training environment. In actual fact, coming back on this senior course is like coming home,” he said.
“In our Defence Force, Guyana is regarded very highly for the comprehensive nature of its training. In fact, my earlier training as an Officer Cadet enabled me to successfully complete Ranger training in the USA.”
The Captain explained that many more of his colleagues and ranks from the SKNDF will be coming to Guyana to pursue training, as it is recognised as a necessary element for their development in the SKNDF. He believes that the experience of training in Guyana has tremendous benefits not only for his soldiers, but also for the further development of the SKNDF.
“The other soldiers of the SKNDF say that their experiences thus far have been quite valuable. They confess that it has taken some getting used to Guyana and some cultural differences, but agree that the experience is one that they will always treasure,” the army said yesterday in its statement. The relationship between the St Kitts and Nevis Defence Force and the GDF goes back several decades and many Officers and Other Ranks of the SKNDF have benefitted from training in Guyana.
“In the framework of cooperation among Caribbean states, the Guyana Defence Force remains committed to providing members of the militaries of sister CARICOM states with opportunities to gain professional development through participation in its training regimen. In this regard, on an annual basis, the GDF invites Caribbean militaries to participate in all its various training programmes.”
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