Major Gen Aphaxard Kiugu, the East African Community Regional Force Commander (EACRF) accompanied by Brigadier Emmanuel Kaputa the Deputy Force Commander (DFC) Intelligence and Operations, Administration and Logistics Brigadier Gen Ndorarigonya Georgoire, Brigadier Michael Kibuye Chief of Staff EACRF and other Senior Force headquarter staff Officers visited Uganda Contingent headquarters at Nyongera Kiwanja and Bunagana rear Operation Bases.
While at Nyongera, the Force Commander was received by Col Michael Walaka Hyeroba the Uganda Peoples’ Defence Forces Contingent (UPDF UGACON) Commander. Col Walaka welcomed Major General at Uganda Contingent Headquarters where he reviewed the general security situation in the UGACON area of responsibility and highlighted the achievements gained so far.
During the Force Commander’s Maiden brief to the troops, he reminded them to be focused on the performance of the EACRF Mandate and to adhere to the Status of Force Agreement (SOFA) and rules of engagement in all operations they participate in.
He stressed the need for the troops to be duty-bound and to be strong towards executing their duties “Our role is to protect the lives of people and their property because they are our brothers and sisters, to achieve this, we need to bookwork closely with the DRC government forces (FARDC) as enshrined in EACRF Mandate towards achieving the mission and objectives of EACRF”.He further reminded the troops that it is equally our responsibility to facilitate the movement of people and humanitarian aid bodies within UGACON area of responsibility so that the NGOs can have access to the community in an effort to assist them meet their basic needs.
Gen Kiugu then tasked the Contingent Commander to maintain the momentum and keep a positive relationship with the local populace towards the fulfillment of the mission.
He concluded his address by thanking the troops for the tremendous job done not only in EACRF but in other operations for peace since their deployment.
The General cautioned the troops to maintain discipline at all times as he emphasized that he will not tolerate indiscipline of any kind while for EACRF mission.
This is the first joint Operations Area familiarization visit of the EACRF Commander to the UGACON Forces with the aim of boosting morale of the troops, needs of the mission and assessing UGACONS’s progress and achievements from the time he assumed office.