Uganda has deployed a new contingent of police personnel to serve under the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS). 144 officers arrived in Mogadishu on Wednesday and were received by senior ATMIS police officers.
They joined an advance team of 16 other officers who arrived earlier in the mission. The total of 160 personnel who will serve under the ATMIS Police component’s Formed Police Unit (FPU), will work alongside other contingents and Individual Police Officers (IPOs) to provide operational support and capacity building to their counterparts in the Somali Police Force (SPF). This is the eleventh contingent to be deployed to Somalia by the Uganda Police in support of the ongoing African Union peace support operations.
They replace the tenth contingent, which recently concluded its tour of duty in Somalia.
The deputy contingent commander of the newly deployed FPU contingent, Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP), Julian Asaasira, says the personnel are well prepared to support their counterparts from the Somali Police Force and implement the mission’s mandate.
“We are well-trained. We’ve undergone mandatory pre-deployment training for six months, during which we have acquired adequate skills to enable us to execute our duties effectively,” said ASP Asaasira.
Under the ATMIS Police mandate, the FPUs provide operational support including protection of key government installations, providing escort duties for Individual Police Officers, VIP protection to visiting delegates and conducting joint patrols.
The IPOs are tasked with providing specialised training, advising and mentoring the Somali Police Force.
Uganda is one of the ATMIS police contributing countries (PCCs), together with Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, and Zambia.