Tuesday, 22 March 2016

Ugandan woman leads the way as AMISOM rebuilds Somalia Police

Christine Alalo is carrying the Ugandan flag in Somalia

A Ugandan Policewoman is playing a key role in AMISOM efforts to build institutional capacity in Somalia.

Deputy Commissioner Christine Alalo yesterday led the police component of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) ) as they handed to the Somali Police Force (SPF) biometric and office equipment. They had a day earlier handed over a renovated Police Station.  

With economic conditions rapidly improving in Somalia and with relative peace in most towns, the country is rising again. AMISOM's effort is aimed an ensuring the Somali Police Force will play a crucial role in keeping the peace. 

Somali Police Force get biometric and office equipment 

According the AMISOM website, amisom-au.org  the equipment is meant to help the Somali Police Force establish an up-to-date biometric database and also aid in the implementation of an efficient personnel and financial management system.

The biometric equipment will also be used by the SPF’s Criminal Investigation Department (CID) fight various types of crime, among them, terrorism, kidnapping and robbery with violence, which are a major hindrance in the Federal Government’s efforts to secure the country. The gadgets will also aid officers in conducting investigations and prosecuting suspects.

The equipment was handed over to the Somali Police Force Commissioner, Maj General Mohamed Sheikh Hassan Hamud, by AMISOM Deputy Police Commissioner Alalo.

The Somali police boss thanked AMISOM for its continued support to the SPF, saying the equipment will be put in good use to improve security in the city.

Somali Police get Renovated Police Station 

A day earlier, AMISOM police handed over a newly renovated police station in Mahas to help improve the institutional capacity of the Somali Police  and enhance the rule of law in Hiiraan region.

The renovation of the station is part of AMISOM’s agenda to equip the SPF with the necessary infrastructure needed to enable it perform its duties efficiently.

The facility, complete with furniture, was handed over to the Hiiraan Police Commissioner, Col. Issaq Ali Abdulle.

“What we are doing here today is part of the stabilization program. When an area is recovered stabilization process begins and one of the programs undertaken is bringing police on the ground to ensure there is rule of law in the area,” Deputy Police Commissioner Alalo noted.

The handover ceremony was attended by the Hiiraan District Commissioner, Mohamed Macow Halne, and the AMISOM Sector Four Commander of the Ethiopian Defence Forces Col. Tsegay Teklay.

As part of the program, 10 police officers from Mogadishu were also deployed to the station to help in the stabilization process.

“Today we are handing over this police station that has been renovated by AMISOM Police. It was a dilapidated police station but it has been renovated to make it a suitable workplace for the officers,” Deputy Police Commissioner Alalo added.

Speaking at the same function, the Hiiraan Police Commissioner, Col. Issaq Ali Abdulle, expressed his optimism in the stabilization process, describing the handover of the facility as a good start in securing Somalia.

“The police officers I brought here today are only 10. It is a small number but we will increase the number. We will also bring transport and other equipment. We also hope to improve on the building. Everything has a start and I hope that the police officers will withstand the challenges and discharge their duties,” Col. Issaq Ali Abdulle said.

Deputy Police Commissioner Alalo said the police officers deployed at the station are expected to roll out community policing and recruit volunteers.

“They need not to just sit here but get out to the community and work closely with them because that is where crime is and the criminals live with the people know who is a criminal and who is not,” Christine Alalo said.

The police station in Mahas is part of a number of renovated or newly constructed police stations handed over recently to the SPF by AMISOM.

Who is Alalo?

Alalo was appointed Deputy Police Commissioner on 9th June 2015, taking over from Mr. Benson Oyo-Nyeko who completed his tour of duty as the Deputy Police Commissioner in February 2015.

Before joining AMISOM she worked with the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) as a Police Advisor in Juba Sector for 2 years, from 2007-2009.

Previously, she headed the Department of Child & Family Protection Unit, which is responsible for handling cases of child abuse and Gender Based Violence (GBV), in the Uganda Police Force.

She hopes to share with the Mission her vast experience in policing spanning 15 years, but also learn more from the mission-considering its peculiarities. She will focus on reforms, restructuring and capacity building for the Somali Police Force.

Life is slowly returning to normal in Somalia

AMISOM's role

The African Union Mission in Somalia is an active regional peace support mission set up by the Peace and Security Council of the African Union with the full support of the United Nation.

AMISOM, as a multidimensional Peace Support Operation, is mandated to take all necessary measures, as appropriate, and in coordination with the Somalia National Defence and Public Safety Institutions, to reduce the threat posed by Al Shabaab and other armed opposition groups,

They also aim to assist in consolidating and expanding the control of the Somalia government over its national territory and establish conditions for effective and legitimate governance across the country.

AMISOM staff comes from a wide range of nations across Africa. The Force Headquarters of the military component, for example, is staffed by officers from Burundi, Cameroon, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Uganda and Zambia. The bulk of its troops though come from six countries: Uganda, Burundi, Djibouti, Kenya, Ethiopia and Sierra Leone.

**SOURCE: Story adapted from Amisom wesbite and @amisomsomalia 


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