Press Statement: Commander of New Uganda Battle Group arrives in Somalia (20.04.2016)
Mogadishu, April 20, 2016 – The Commander of a new battle group from the Uganda People’s Defense Force (UPDF), serving under the African Union in Somalia (AMISOM), has arrived in Mogadishu.
Col. Ronald Bigiriwa, the commander of battle group 18 jetted into Somalia yesterday afternoon with another batch of soldiers serving under him.
The new group is replacing battle group 15 based in Arbiska, which under the command of Col Silvio Aguma has completed its one year tour of duty. Col. Bigirwa was received by Lt. Col. Paul Muhanguzi, the Commanding Officer of 35 Battalion under battle group 15.
Addressing the soldiers moments after arrival, Col. Bigirwa called for discipline, alertness and dedication.
“My headquarters is going to be based in Arbiska and these troops are going to occupy the positions in the basecamp and outside Mogadishu town,” Col. Bigirwa said.
Speaking about his expectations, he expressed optimism that his team will deliver on the mission and play its part in bringing peace and stability in Somalia.
“It is just to continue with the mission of pan-Africanism. We are going to start where battle group 15 which is rotating out ended and we will continue with the task. We are ready for the challenges. These troops have trained enough and are ready,” Col. Bigirwa said.
In November last year, another Ugandan battle group rotated out and was replaced by battle group 17, commanded by Col. Bob Ogik.