Deploy Formed Police Unit to Somali -- AMISOM

BY: Emelia Ennin Abbey, Jowhar, Somalia
UN police officers - archive shot
UN police officers - archive shot

The African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) has appealed to the government of Ghana and the Ghana Police Administration to consider deploying a Formed Police Unit (FPU) contingent to Somalia to advance peace and security efforts in the country.

The appeal was made by the acting Police Commissioner of the AMISOM, Mrs Christine Alalo, when she interacted with 13 journalists from Ghana and Nigeria on a field visit to Somalia at the invitation of AMISOM.

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Ghana presently has a continent of 37 Individual Police Officers (IPOs) serving with AMISOM but has no FPU contingent in Somalia.

Mrs Alalo said the AMISOM Police was currently made up of three Formed Police Units (FPU) deployed from Uganda, Nigeria and Sierra Leone.

Appeal


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The FPUs, Mrs Alalo said, played a crucial role in ensuring improved security in the liberated areas of Somalia which were occupied by members of Al-Shabab and other insurgent groups.

She said AMISOM, with 718 police personnel, needed 322 more to reach its 1,040 target, saying that such target could be reached with the deployment of two more FPUs from police contributing countries, including Ghana.

“We need five FPUs but at the moment we have only three and we will be very grateful if Ghana will give us one FPU.

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"AMISOM has no police force. Our police personnel are members of their national police services and are seconded to work with AMISOM, she said.

Police

The AMISOM Police component, she said had the mandate to train, mentor, monitor and advise the Somali Police Force (SPF) with the aim of transforming it into a credible and effective organisation adhering to strict international standards.

It provides mentoring and advisory support to SPF on police duties such as human rights observation, crime prevention strategies, community policing, search procedures and investigations.

Data available at AMISOM indicate that more than 4,000 Somali police officers have been trained by the mission in different categories of police work with support from AMISOM partners.

Ghana is ready

Speaking to the Daily Graphic, the Head of the Ghanaian Police Continent in Somalia, Chief Superintendent of Police Paul Kisi Frimpong said Ghana had offered to provide an FPU to AMISOM following a request.

“The official process has been initiated following an official communication between AMISOM and Ghana, and we are working on getting an FPU deployed,” he said.

Currently, he said Ghana had a standing FPU “and it will not be difficult to deploy. We are waiting for a team to go to Ghana and inspect our equipment and observe training of personnel before deployment.”