The recently appointed Vice Chief of the Defence Forces (VCDF) Lieutenant General Francis Ogolla has finally handed over his instruments of power as the outgoing Commander of the Kenya Air Force (KAF) to his successor, Major General John Omenda in a colourful event at the Moi Air Base (MAB), Nairobi on 29th February 2021.
During the event Lt. Gen. Ogolla thanked President Uhuru Kenyatta, the Commander in Chief of the Defence Forces of the Republic of Kenya, for bestowing trust on him and promoting him after a three year stint as the Commander KAF.
The VCDF further thanked the MAB and the KAF fraternity for the support they gave him during the period he was Commanding the KAF and implored them to support the incoming Commander saying this is the surest way of achieving the KAF mission.
“I stand here with great humility to thank God for having given me the opportunity to serve the KAF for the duration I have served. It is a mixture of happiness and sorrow. Sad to me in the sense that I have had a very close touch with the Air Force and today realistically I am losing that touch as I move to the office of the VCDF. I am equally happy and I register my appreciation to the Commander in Chief of the Defence Forces for having the trust in me to appoint me in this position,” said the VCDF.
“This Air Force is here to stay and has a mission to defend the air space of Kenya. People who serve in it come and go but the mission remains unchanged. In Fact, it was just the other day that I took over, it is now three years and two weeks. I want to tell (Maj. Gen.) John, you’ll be handing over that flag to somebody else and that is the process of life,” he added saying he has been in the service for 37 years.
He said as a Commander, he was bound to make some decisions that may have left some happy and others sad but affirmed he made all decisions for the good interest of the KDF.
“I may have made some decisions and offended some of you, some decisions made others happy but I want to assure you that all those decisions I made were under the influence of the service for the Republic. If I were to make decisons again, I would have decided the same way for the interest of the Service,” said Lt. Gen. Ogolla.
The VCDF challenged the attendants not to work with an aim of being promoted but urged them to serve with utmost diligence and allow their exemplary work earn them promotion.
Lt. Gen. Ogolla urged the military personnel to observe political neutrality as the country heads to the general elections next year emphasizing that it is a core mandate for the military to be apolitical.
Maj. Gen. Omenda who until his promotion as the KAF Commander was the deputy to Lt. Gen. Ogolla commended his predecessor for the promotion and thanked him for the guidance.
“I wish to congratulate you and wish you well as you move to Defence Headquaters. We are privileged to have you in that position because you understand the work of the KAF and you shall extend your guidance for the betterment of the service. On behalf of the Officers, Service men and women, we wish you well and God’s blessings,” said the incoming KAF Commander.
The event was attended by Base Commanders MAB and Laikipia Air Base, Senior Officers, Officers and service members.