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KDF marks 9th anniversary since entering Somalia

 Officers led by CDF Robert Kibochi observed a moment of silence in respect of fallen soldiers. [Courtesy]

The Kenya Defence Forces have today marked the 9th KDF day to celebrate the valour of the men and women in the forces.

The event was presided over by Defence Cabinet Secretary Monica Juma at the Mariakani Garrison in Kilifi County, who unveiled a monument that commemorates the sacrifice of officers and service members who participated in the Linda Nchi Operation, as well as the fallen soldiers.

The CS lauded the strides that KDF has made since its entry into Somalia to promote regional, global peace and stability, and fight the militant group-Al Shabaab, who have posed a security threat to Kenya for years.

"Since the KDF entered the Somalia theatre, Al Shabaab activities have significantly reduced, and while this terrorist group remains a threat, its ability to operate has been greatly degraded," she said.

Juma added: "Your contribution to AMISOM remains a game-changer and for this, I salute each and every one of you today. As we recall our journey, I urge each one of you: “do not drop your guard."

On Tuesday, the Chief of the Defence Forces Gen Robert Kibochi also visited KDF troops operating in Kuday, Sarira, Sankuri, Baure and Manda.

The officers observed a moment of silence in respect of soldiers who have paid the ultimate price in the war against Al Shabaab.

Chief of Staff at the Office of the President Nzioka Waita also tweeted in celebration of the day saying, 

Today we remember & celebrate all our valiant men & women in the military who are serving the Nation at home & in active theatres beyond our borders. We thank you for your service, bravery & dedication ! #KDFday @kdfinfo @CSDefence_Kenya

— Nzioka Waita (@NziokaWaita) October 14, 2020

Today marks nine years since the launch of Linda Nchi Operation in October 2011.

KDF crossed to Somalia to neutralise Al Shabaab which is responsible for a series of kidnappings and terror attacks in Somalia and Kenya operating under command structure African Union peacekeeping force (Amisom).

This also comes against a backdrop of seeming 'military takeover' in running some civilian operations.

Late March, President Uhuru Kenyatta appointed Major General Mohamed Badi to head the Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) office.

The NMS is in charge of some functions of the Nairobi County which have been transferred to the National Government.

The President also invoked Executive Order No. 3 of 2020, directing that Badi shall attend all Cabinet and Committee meetings.

Again last month, Uhuru directed that the cash-strapped Kenya Meat Commission be placed under the Ministry of Defence.

“Following the transfer of ministerial responsibility of the Kenya Meat Commission to the ministry of defence by the President, you are directed to facilitate a seamless transfer of Kenya Meat Commission to the ministry of defence,” Agriculture CS Peter Munya said in a memo dated September 7.

The use of ex-military officials to fix moribund institutions has lately been a to-go for the President, a move critics and industry experts have termed unconstitutional and an assault on the supreme law.



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