The African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) Deputy Force Commander in charge of Operations and Planning, Maj. Gen. Marius Ngendabanka on Monday visited the port city of Kismayo to familiarize himself with peacekeeping operations in Jubaland state.
“We are a new leadership team in the military component hence we have to visit all the military areas of responsibility to familiarize ourselves. We came here to evaluate the achievements made in light of the ATMIS mandate and the CONOPS (Concept of Operations),” said Maj. Gen. Ngendabanka who is also the Acting ATMIS Force Commander.
Kismayo, the capital of Jubaland, is located approximately 400 kilometers southwest of Mogadishu, Somalia’s capital city. It is under Sector Six which is manned by ATMIS Ethiopian and Kenyan troops.
The visit by the Mission’s senior military leadership was also to identify the challenges troops face in the sector in view of the ongoing joint operations with the Somali National Army (SNA), against Al Shabaab militants in southern Somalia.
“We have also come to evaluate the challenges the sector faces and to boost troop morale, their combat readiness, and effectiveness,” observed Maj. Gen Ngendabanka.
On arrival, the Deputy Force Commander was received by Sector Six Commander Col. Tesit Nightie and other senior officers before inspecting a guard of honour mounted by the Kenyan contingent.
Maj. Gen Ngendabanka visited some of the facilities critical in the provision of llogistical and service support to the troops including the Level-One Plus Hospital in Kismayo.
He commended Ethiopian and Kenyan troops for their critical role in securing Kismayo and its environs and urged them to continue working closely with the Somali National Army in fighting Al Shabaab militants in the Federal Member State.
Other officials present during the visit included ATMIS Deputy Force Commander in charge of Logistics and Support, Maj. Gen. Peter Kimani Muteti; ATMIS Chief Military Officer(CMIO), Col Mohamed Sirat Yusuf, and ATMIS military Chief of Staff Brig. Gen. Tegegn Kindu Gezu.