NAIROBI (AMISOM) –
Donors have pledged to continue supporting the
African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) to enable it achieve
its key mandate of stabilizing Somalia.
of the European Union, United Nations, Government of the United
Kingdom, the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of
Disputes (ACCORD) promised their commitment to assist Africa’s
flagship peace and security mission pull Somalia out of civil
The pledge was made, Thursday, at a five-day meeting held in
Nairobi attended by AMISOM’s top leadership and donors.
The meeting aims to draw up a list of activities and budget
that will guide the Mission through its exit strategy expected
to come into effect in the second half of 2018.
Albrecht Braun, a representative of the EU-ACP (European
Union – Africa, Caribbean Pacific) praised AMISOM for the role
it has played in pacifying the country emerging from decades of
war and anarchy.
"The EU overall will remain engaged in Somalia to contribute
to this process of stabilization and the delivery of tangible
peace dividends," Mr. Braun stated.
The EU representative noted that AMISOM had played a
tremendous role in transforming Somalia after many years of war.
"It is obviously clear to everybody that without AMISOM,
Somalia wouldn’t be where it is today.
"A lot has been achieved, thanks to AMISOM, which has
provided the space for the political process to progress," Mr.
He noted that over the last 10 years, EU-ACP has contributed
more than 1.3 billion Euros (US$1.68) to AMISOM and had
committed about two billion euros in between 2004 and 2017, in
the field of peace and security through the African Peace
Facility, with the bulk of the money channeled to AMISOM.
Another 180 million euros (US$189.5), Mr. Braun noted, has
been earmarked for the period April – December 2017.
"So I do think that clearly demonstrates our continued
commitment to AMISOM," Mr. Braun told the meeting but urged
AMISOM to consider looking into the issue of alternative sources
of funding to bridge gaps.
"It is also important to mobilize additional financial
support from other donors and specifically from African
governments and other partners.
"Peace and stability is a collective effort," the envoy said.
Hubert Price, the Head of United Nations Support Office in
Somalia (UNSOS), observed that the Nairobi meeting presented a
key opportunity for AMISOM and UNSOS to interact, so as to get a
deeper understanding of the magnitude of work that needs to be
done vis-a-vis resources available, to help in budgeting.
"We have to strike that balance of reality between what we
need and what we can actually get and the budget business is one
that never ends," Mr. Price observed.
"This is a key opportunity to better understand how both
UNSOS and AMISOM are able to engage on the critical areas of
support and resource management, which at the end of the day,
are key to everything that we do.
"If you do not have the resources you cannot meet your
mandate objectives," the Head of UNSOS added.
UNSOS, he noted, has provided, among others, support base,
logistical hubs, air and surface travel, stipends and training
for troops and police, capacity building, rations and general
James Haggerty, an official from the British Embassy in
Somalia, reiterated the importance of winning the hearts and
minds of the Somali population, if stabilization efforts are to
yield fruit and lauded AMISOM for trying to achieve the
"We look forward to continuing and developing a very close
relationship with the African Union and with AMISOM in
particular in Mogadishu," Mr. Haggerty noted.
The Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African
Union Commission (SRCC) for Somalia, Ambassador Francisco
Madeira, told the meeting that the Mission had failed to deliver
on some of its objectives due to funding constraints, prompting
the officials to seek alternative means.
"Inadequate funding has been a major challenge to the
implementation of the 2016 budget. Resources were not available
to fund our projects and in fact no resources were available,"
the SRCC stated.
Ambassador Madeira appealed to the international community to
continue supporting the mission until such time when it has
achieved its mandate.
"It is also pertinent that the partners understand that this
mission is a UN approved mission and therefore the international
community should continue to identify itself with this mission
and support it until our mandate is fully accomplished," the
Issues discussed at the meeting included support for
political processes, security sector, stabilization and
recovery, protection of human rights and gender process.
Also on the table was the issue on how AMISOM should
facilitate access to recovered areas and secure main supply
During the Monday session, it emerged that AMISOM was finding
it difficult to run some of its programmes owing to reduced
AMISOM leaders called for austere measures.
Ambassador Madeira informed the meeting that the new Somalia
leadership under President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo deserved
the support of all to entrench itself and also meet its promise
of eradicating Al-Shabaab in two years.
"We as AMISOM and our partners should work closely with his
government to make this possible.
The implementation of our 2018 budget will be a decisive step
in this direction," Ambassador Madeira observed.
AU representatives at the meeting, Francis Kankya, (Advisor
to Deputy Chair, AU Commission), and Assietou Diouf (Director,
Programming, Budgeting, Finance and Accounting) lauded AMISOM’s
role in Somalia and asked the Mission to be effective in
operations and financial management, create synergies with donor
partners, and be dynamic in budgeting.
Ms. Diouf urged the meeting to come up with a budget that is
meaningful, useful and realistic.
"It means we should have targets that are achievable and
measureable in line with the financial resource available," Ms.
Diouf explained at the meeting which comes to a close today.
She said 2018 would be the year of "consolidation" for the AU
Mr. Kankya said a failed Somalia would create greater
insecurity in the region and beyond, urging the international
community not to abandon the Eastern Africa country.
"The investment that has been made in the past ten years
shouldn’t be thrown away," he said.
In his speech, AMISOM chief of Plans and Operations (POU)
Maj. General Francis Okello thanked the people of Somalia for
their close relationship with AMISOM and expressed gratitude to
the AU and donors for their assistance towards the Somalia
Top AMISOM officials meet to review budget and future plans