New KDF Chief

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New Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) Chief General Francis Ogolla took command of the East African country’s military might at the weekend, bringing to an end the 44 year-long uniformed career of outgoing Chief General Robert Kibochi.

Kibochi’s last three years were as the senior soldier and commander of the KDF. He previously served, among others, as Vice Chief of the KDF and Commander Kenya Army.

Defence Cabinet Secretary (CS) Aden Duyale lauded Kibochi for exemplary service saying the retired CDF served the nation selflessly, with loyalty and dedication according to a statement.

“You dedicated 44 years of your life diligently serving the people of Kenya. A look into your illustrious career show Kenya invested heavily in you, by providing training opportunities, from when you were a young officer, through mid-level training leading up to the executive and strategic levels of education,” he said.

Duale noted under Kibochi’s leadership of, KDF emerged as a leader in efforts and initiatives aimed at defeating terrorism and realising peace in the region.

The CS highlighted some of his achievements as CDF, including the enhancement of welfare for both serving and retired personnel together with their families, the establishment of wellness centres to address psychological and social wellbeing of KDF personnel and dependants and the gradual modernisation of the KDF in recent years.

He congratulated Ogolla on his appointment noting he has the requisite competency, training and leadership skills to take the military to greater heights in the East African region and the globe.

Kibochi thanked the incoming CDF for being part of his strategic team. He said the team ensured KDF remained mission ready in responding to diverse operational and administrative engagements.

Regionally and internationally, KDF remains a key player contributing to global and regional peace and stability through assignments with the United Nations (UN), the African Union (AU) and the East Africa Community (EAC).

He said soldiers significantly continue to degrade the terrorist group al-Shabaab and assist in restoring peace and stability in Somalia under the umbrella of ATMIS.

“We also continue to train and mentor the Somalia Security Forces (SSF) to enable them to take up responsibility of ensuring the stability of their nation as ATMIS exits Somalia by December 2024.”

Kenyan troops have been involved in various multi-agency operations and training exercises internally, which enhance and ensure a collective and synergised approach to national security issues.

Kibochi leaves a legacy which includes spearheading modernisation and expansion of the three services, revival of the Kenya Meat Commission, construction of defence force regional hospitals and rehabilitation of Uhuru Gardens into a state-of-the-art monument and museum among others the statement reads.