A Kenya Defence Forces contingent comprising of 75 Military Police officers serving under the UN Hybrid Operation Mission in Darfur returned home on Saturday after completing their tour of duty under the African Union.
The officers were welcomed at JKIA by Deputy Army Commander Major General Albert Kendagor and other senior military offices who commended them for the successful service in Darfur, Sudan.
They arrived on board a chartered Boeing 767 Ethiopian Airlines airplane
major General Kendagor congratulated the troops for their exemplary performance in Darfur on behalf of the KDF leadership.
“We are pleased with the work you have done, and have projected a good image of the KDF from the service you have rendered to the people of Sudan especially in preventing crime, investigation and engaging in protocol duties as assigned,” Major General Kendagor said.
He said the the troops, who were deployed in September 2019, finished their mandate on December 31 but a six-month period was issued for troops drawdown and back-loading of country-owned equipment.
The troops will undergo mandatory isolation before they are allowed to reunite with their families as required by Ministry of Health protocols.
The troops’ Officer Commanding Major Jackson Muthee said their core mandate was military law and order enforcement, investigations, confinement operations and customs activities.
“We assisted the Force Commander in maintaining discipline and enforcing the UN standards of conduct by ensuring that all Military Personnel maintain the highest standards of behavior throughout their mission,” he said.
Sergeant Stephen Kirsiet said despite the challenges experienced in the mission area, the esprit de corps amongst the troops deployed to UNAMID enhanced their operations towards meeting their mandate.
Senior Private Hilda Makandi, who was among the 10 female soldiers, expressed her gratitude to have been considered for the mission saying their role is key in achievement of the mission objectives.
“Despite the harsh climatic conditions and language barrier, we managed to navigate the hurdles and I am happy that there is realization of peace in Sudan.”
Kenya Foreign Affairs PS Ambassador Kamau Macharia congratulated the troops saying, “Thank you to KDF for a job well done and making our country proud in international service”.
Kenya’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the UN in New York Martin Kimani also thanked the forces for their service.
The UN Hybrid Operations in Darfur mission was established in July 2007 with the core mandate of protecting the civilians, in addition to contributing to security for humanitarian assistance, monitoring and verifying implementation of agreements, assisting an inclusive political process and contributing to the promotion of human rights and laws.