A contingent of 144 police officers from Nigeria have arrived in Somalia to boost stabilisation efforts in the country, the African Union mission said on Sunday.
Amisom Police operations coordinator Daniel Ali Gwambal said 30 police officers to serve under the Amisom for a period of one year will be deployed to Beletweyne in HirShabelle State, while the rest will serve in various roles in the capital, Mogadishu.
“They are here in order to fulfill the mandate of Amisom with regards to operational support to the Somalis and at the same time to mentor the Somali Police Force (SPF),” Gwambal said in a statement issued in Mogadishu.
“There are certain specific duties that are also incumbent on them to perform while they are here such as regular patrols at checkpoints, guard static duties and other duties that involve general policing,” he added.
Gwambal said the officers will work on providing VIP escort and protection services, training and assisting the SPF in public order management, conducting joint patrols with their Somali counterparts and securing key government installations and high-level events.
The AU mission said the arrival of the new contingent is a major boost to law and order efforts, as they will be working in concert with their Somali counterparts in ensuring improved security in liberated areas.
The commander of the newly deployed unit, Samuel Ita, said his officers were eager to begin discharging their duties, to help advance the mission’s mandate.