Lieutenant General Jonah Mwangi today graced the official opening ceremony of the 27th Regional Senior Mission Leaders’ (RSML) Course, a first of its kind as the Vice Chief of the Kenya Defence Forces at the International Peace Support Training Centre (IPSTC) in Karen.
The course co-sponsored by IPSTC and the United Kingdom through British Peace Support Team-Africa consist of 27 participants drawn from 17 partner countries.
Targetting men and women in the top and managerial levels serving or have future potential to serve in Peace Support Operations, the training aims at equipping and strengthening leaderships with relevent skills so that they are better prepared to tackle complexities of the current and future operations.
Participants will at the end of the course have requisite tools and skills for conflict analysis and management to facilitate the resolution of conflicts. This will be through relevant knowledge and skills on intergrated assessment and planning for effective execution and mandate implementation.
Addressing the course participants, Vice Chief of Defence Forces Lt General Jonah Mwangi observed that the present day, United Nation Peace Support ventures face a multiplicity of challenges due to the changing character of conflict and fractious geopolitics thus, the need for effective leadership underscored by a mix of physical and mental stamina and knowledge of the operating environment.
He urged the sitting cohort to leverage on the opportunity, break cultural barriers, share and build lasting relationships that will enable them to coordinate better future operations.
“I urge you to share seamlessly, experiences and insights which combined with those of the mentors, will help transform the peace support dormain in the future. I am optimistic that the scenarios you will consider will test your notions, imaginations and temperament to a reasonable degree that can only make you better leaders in the peace support space.” He said.
Director of Studies IPSTC, Major General(Rtd) Bernard Commins underscored the importance of the course in providing them with the knowledge in dealing with peace operation challenges. He also urged them to be open in their engagements, active and conscise in maximising the knowledge and expertise from the mentors.
On her part, Brigadier Ronnie Westerman, the United Kingdom Defence Attachee emphasised on the relevance and quality of the course in peaceful operations and implored instructors to appy both theoretical and practical applications in their delivery.
The event also saw IPSTC and Military Wives Association of Kenya under the stewardship of MWAK chairperson Mrs. Tabitha Kibochi partner and reminisce the International Women’s day theme of innovation and technology for gender equality, by offering Ms. Ivy Jelimo a young enterprenuer involved in Research, Science and Technology an opportunity to demonstrate her leadership skills and advocate for change by shadowing the the Director of the Centre, Brigadier Joyce Sitienei.
She took the opportunity to welcome the Vice Chief of Defence Forces as well as deliver her key note address to the participants on the importance of the course in imparting the students with knowledge to conduct peace operations.
This in increasing awareness on use of digital space to champion and protect rights of women and girls as well as harnessing gender confidence, communication and leadership in young women.