Cabinet Secretary for Defence Hon. Aden Duale has launched the National Peace Support Operations (PSOs) Fund at Kahawa Garrison, Nairobi today.
The Fund is meant to, among others; support the Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) in the acquisition and maintenance of contingent-owned equipment during deployments in PSOs across the globe, enable the military to attain the required international standards and enhance Force Posture.
In his remarks, the CS noted that, as a leading Troop Contributing Country, Kenya has made an indelible mark in the global arena by actively participating in PSOs since 1979 under the auspices of the United Nations, African Union and the East African Community.
“Our involvement in Peace Support Operations across the continent and beyond has been both notable and transformative. The establishment of this Fund is a decisive response to ensure our peacekeepers are well prepared, suitably equipped, and able to meet Kenya’s obligations in the maintenance of international peace and security,” said the CS.
He reiterated that, in every mission that the KDF deployed her troops have helped in building stronger alliances with other countries, enhanced border security, and ensured a flourishing economy.
“The Fund will allow us to significantly elevate our role on the global stage, bolster our economic prospects, and promote international cooperation, in the fulfilment of our international commitments to peace and security. With this Fund in place, we are ensuring that our Defence Forces can rapidly deploy with the right equipment and competencies in a changing security environment,” the CS added.
The Fund was approved by the National Assembly and ratified by the Cabinet on 8th October last year.
Hon. Duale expressed his appreciation to His Excellency Honourable Dr. William Ruto, the President of the Republic of Kenya and Commander-in-Chief of the Defence Forces, and the Cabinet Secretary- Ministry of Treasury and Economic Planning Prof. Njuguna Ndungu-for their goodwill and steadfast support in this noble endeavour.
His sentiments were echoed by Chief of the Defence Forces (CDF) General Francis Ogolla who said the shift in the global security environment has affected peacekeeping in various ways thus the Fund is a strategic asset that shall unequivocally enhance the military capability, efficiency and effectiveness.
“Terrorism and violent extremism have made peacekeeping very dangerous and demanding. Peacekeepers today operate in an environment where they, themselves, are targets which calls for their preparedness, training and well-equipped with modern war-fighting equipment,” said Gen Ogolla.
Defence Principal Secretary Mr. Patrick Mariru who is the first Administrator of the Fund said the Fund is operational and the Secretariat is properly constituted comprising Senior Military Officers and the Ministry of Defence Staff.
“Accountability will remain the bedrock of this Fund. I will ensure that the Fund is run in accordance with the Public Finance Management Act and other applicable laws,” said the PS.
During the occasion, the CS flagged off the inaugural contingent-owned equipment that is destined to assist in restoring peace and security in the Democratic Republic of Congo under the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in DRC (MONUSCO).
The Vice Chief of Defence Forces (VCDF) Lieutenant General Jonah Mwangi, Service Commanders, General Officers and other Senior military Officers were present.