Vice Chief of the Defence Forces (VCDF) Lieutenant General Francis Ogolla, today, Thursday 31st March 2022, officiated the closing ceremony of the Eastern Africa Standby Force (EASF) Command Post Exercise (CPX) codenamed ‘Mashariki Salaam III’ at the Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) leadership centre in Karen, Nairobi.
Lieutenant General Ogolla lauded the EASF directorship and participants for their commitment and efforts towards bettering themselves and successfully completing the exercise.
The VCDF noted that the platform had been helpful in promoting comradeship and brotherhood between the different countries which had aided in strengthening existing bonds among them.
“Aside from building capacity within the EASF, this exercise has also doubled up in bolstering relationship while at the same time providing a platform for further expansion into new partnerships and friendships,” he said.
He said that the exercises, Mashariki Salaam, marked key milestones towards great achievement. “The joint exercise ensures that as a region, we are better prepared and are headed towards the realisation of our vision of self sustainment in safeguarding our peace, security and stability in the region,” he added.
Chairperson of EASF Council of Ministers of Defence and Security Field Marshal General Birhanu Jula congratulated the participants for their willingness and determination in seeing the exercise through and giving it their all.
“It is indeed quite unfortunate that our own people are usually the ones to suffer most as a result of the adverse consequences of armed conflict. It is now due time we direct all effort and resources towards preventative measures which the EASF stands for,” he said.
The ten-day exercise saw 195 participants from ten member states take part with the goal of familiarisation and implementation of efficient communication and symbiotic teamwork within the EASF in readiness for deployment.
EASF is made up of ten member states: Burundi, Comoros, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, Sudan and Uganda who are all unified in the belief of a peaceful, conflict free Africa.
Among those present were the chairperson of ‘friends’ of EASF, Colonel Djens Lindvig and the CPX Exercise Director Brigadier Dixon Chivatsi among other invited guests and exercise participants.