The Standard - A Kenyan general, Lt. General Jonathan Rono, has taken over leadership of the six-nation African Union Mission to Somalia (Amisom) Forces. Lt Gen Rono replaces Ugandan military officer Lt Gen Andrew Gutti.
Last week, the new Amison Force commander visited Kuday Island, which was liberated by Somali National Army and Amisom troops in March 2015. Another Kenyan, Lt Colonel Paul Njuguna, is the Amisom military spokesman. According to Amisom Daily Media Monitoring quoting Weekly Gazette, Rono visited the Island, which is 120km south west of Kismayo along the Indian Ocean. It was a strategic logistical hub for the Al-Shabaab militants after the fall of Barawe and Kismayo seaports. The commander toured defence positions and interacted with troops. "Al Shabaab propaganda will not succeed. Our troops are well placed. Just because they were able to ambush a camp or execute a surprise attack on troops does not mean they are winning. They are losing. We will deal them a final blow in the coming few days," he said. He was accompanied by Amisom Chief of Staff Brig Gen Cyprien Ndikuriyo and Force HQ Operations Staff Officer Lt Col Ahmed, among others. Rono has also visited Burundian troops on the frontline in Jereredo Army base in Sector 5 and briefed them on the ongoing readjustment and reorganisation of troops in strategic towns, saying it was aimed at revitalising security in the outposts. He said Amisom and the Somali National Security Forces will intensify activity and momentum.