The African Union (AU) Special envoy on Women, Peace and Security Madame Benita Diop has commended AMISOM for its contribution to peace and security in Somalia and more particularly women for stepping up efforts to defeat Al-shabab.
Benita, whose role is to promote the protection of the rights of women and children affected by violent conflicts in Africa, congratulated women in uniform for stepping up efforts to bring lasting peace to Somalia and commended the progress attained so far.
Madame Diop made the remarks during a one day solidarity visit she made to AMISOM bases in Somalia on Wednesday alongside the Deputy Secretary General of UN Amina Mohamed.
In her remarks, She said she was amazed how the security situation has changed ever since she last visited Somalia in 2014. She however renewed the call for concerted effort to bring peace to Somalia.
“The women and the men with the women at the front have been defeating Al-shabab; I want to thank you for what you have been doing” Madame Diop remarked.
“As I was walking down right from the airport; I said, what a difference! What a difference! Last time I always had to move in a truck tightly escorted, but today I went the town just in a car. What a difference!” She said.
The AMISOM police gender officer Urhere Glory informed Madame Diop that female police officers are not segregated in roles, or to a particular unit, but they are deployed along with their counterparts as well as engaging in developmental programmes within communities in Somalia.
Head of AMISOM and Special representative for Chairperson AU commission for Somalia Ambassador Francisco Madeira appreciated Madame Diop for representing the embodiment of African women in the fight to conquer their rightful place in the concept of their societies, and her clear vision on the issues of women and protection of children on the continent.
During the visit to the headquarters of AMISOM in Mogadishu, she inspected a quarter guard mounted by female AMISOM soldiers and laid a wreath in honor of the men and women in AMISOM and Somali national security forces who lost their lives in pursuit peace in Somalia.