Uganda’s Defence Advisor to Federal Republic of Somalia, Brigadier General Francis Chemo and Sector One Contingent Commander, Brigadier General Peter Gaetano Omola, on Sunday 9th April, 2023 inspected UPDF troops working under African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) based in Arbiska Forward Operating Base (FOB) 30kms North East of Mogadishu city. The purpose of inspection was to assess the security situation and status of the troops’ readiness in degrading Al-Shabaab terror group and other subversive elements.
While interacting with commanders and staff, Brig Gen Chemo expressed gratitude with UGABAG XXXVI for scaling down the threat posed by Al-Shabaab. He recollected the previous years of frequent probe attacks from Al-Shabaab elements that affected the communities around the FOB and the vehicle borne improvised explosive devices which used to affect travellers along the main supply route.
“Compared to the previous years when every evening and early morning you would receive incomings, there is sanity in this location. This is thanks to your joint efforts in eliminating terror attacks,” reminisced Gen Chemo and cautioned the troops against letting their guards down due to the lull of Al-Shabaab as they are unpredictable but maintain vigilance in order to ensure the stabilization gains are sustained.
Meanwhile, the sector one commander Brig Gen Peter Omola called upon commanders to emphasize on force protection and resilience to counter the effects of vehicle borne explosive devices. He applauded Battle Group 36 for detecting and detonating over twenty improvised explosive devices on main supply routes and urged them to maintain the tempo.
“In the shortest period you have been here you have managed to detonate over 20 bombs. That is the determination required of everyone in the mission area in light of the dynamic Al-Shabaab terror threat,” said Brig Gen Omola. He urged the Battle Group Commander Col John Musiitwa to improve on civil military cooperation activities and enhance active defense activities as the best way to degrade Al-Shabaab.
Arbiska is the gateway to other federal states of Somalia from Mogadishu capital city. The town was captured from Alshabaab grip in 2011by AMISOM forces but has frequently been attacked by Alshabaab elements especially through the use of both vehicle borne improvised explosives and indirect attacks.