New Somali Chief of Defence Force Takes Over The Reins Of Power

28 Sep 2015

New Somali Chief of Defence Force Takes Over The Reins Of Power

The new Chief of Defence Forces of the Somali National Army Maj. Gen. Mohamed Adan Ahmed took over office on Saturday, two days after his swearing in.

Maj. Gen. Ahmed took over the reins of power from his predecessor Maj. Gen. Dahir Adan Elmi at a function held at the ministry of defence headquarters in Mogadishu.

The colourful ceremony was attended by the Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid Sharmarke, members of the cabinet, top army officers including the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) Deputy Force Commander in charge of Support and Logistics Maj. Gen Nakibus Lakara and members of the diplomatic corps.

In his inaugural speech, the new military chief called for increased resource allocation to the army, given the crucial role it plays in peace and stabilization efforts. He said the allocation would turn the force into an effective body, capable of dealing with security challenges facing the country.

“Since the army is the backbone of the security of the nation and no nation can exist without an armed force, we are asking the government to give priority to the army in terms of resources,” Maj. Gen. Ahmed said.

The new military boss also called for greater co-operation between the SNA, AMISOM, the population and international partners, saying it would turn the military into a vibrant and effective force.

“To AMISOM we say we should not misunderstand you. We know how important you are to us. I ask you to collaborate with us closely. I was one of the top SNA leaders who in the past went to the troop contributing countries such as Uganda, Burundi and Ethiopia to help build your forces. So now it is your turn to help us rebuild our institutions,” he emphasized.

In his remarks, Prime Minister called for a fully integrated army that is representative of Somalia and which will be in harmony with the political developments in the country.

“We took federalism as our system and that system is new to Somalis. This federal system will affect everything except the national army and that is why it is very important to agree on the national outlook of the army. The reason why we are building the army is not only to defeat the Al-Shabaab, but to secure the entire country such that no group can plunge the country into crisis,” said Prime Minister Sharmarke.

The new Chief of Defence Force was appointed on 3rd of September and sworn in on 24th September at the Presidential Palace in Mogadishu.

Also retiring was the Deputy CDF Brig. Gen Abdirizak Khalif Elmi. He was replaced by Brigadier General Ali Bashe.