The Special Representative of the African Union Commission Chairperson (SRCC) for Somalia, Ambassador Francisco Madeira, led a high powered delegation of senior AMISOM officials to Jowhar, in Middle Shabelle region, to meet the Burundi troops.
The objective of the visit was to hold discussions on security and ensure the fight against Al Shabaab in Middle Shabelle region is sustained.
The SRCC also formally introduced the new Force Commander, Lt. Gen Osman Noor Soubagleh, to the contingent and officially welcomed the new sector five commander, Brig Gen Ndiwayo Venaste.
“The objective of this visit was to formally welcome the new Commander, Brig Gen Ndiwayo Venaste and also to introduce to you the new Force Commander Lt. Gen Osman Noor Soubagleh,” Ambassador Madeira said.
The delegation that held daylong discussions with the AMISOM Burundian contingent comprised the Deputy SRCC, Lydia Wanyoto; AMISOM Force Commander, Lt. Gen Osman Noor Soubagleh; and the Deputy Force Commander, Maj. General Nakibus Lakara, among other senior officials.
The SRCC welcomed the newly deployed troops from Burundi and challenged them to quickly familiarize themselves with their environment to enable them execute their mandate successfully.
“I challenge the new battalion to be aware of the challenges at hand and future operations to enable it succeed,” Ambassador Madeira added.
The SRCC urged the troops to work closely with the local administration officials and make efforts to win over the population in the fight against terrorism.
Ambassador Madeira noted that AMISOM’s new Concept of Operations (CONOPs), adopted recently, required troops to not only capture and liberate towns, but also degrade Al Shabaab and limit their capacity to cause terror in other parts of the country.
The new CONOPs, he said, will be the focus of the Mission, going forward, to pave way for a smooth handover of the country’s security to the Somali Security forces.
“The only way we can do this is to effectively destroy Al Shabaab and hand over Sector V and others to the Somalis. This requires us to strengthen SNA,” the SRCC stressed.
The AMISOM senior leadership commended the Burundian troops for capturing more territory from Al Shabaab and protecting the population in their area of operation.
The delegation challenged the troops to build on the successes already registered, to achieve lasting peace and stability in the country.
AMISOM Burundian troops are charged with securing the Middle Shabelle region, which includes the key districts of Johwar, Cadale and Adan Yabl.