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Sierra Leone Colonel to Head Military Training in Somalia

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Col. Mamadi Mohamed Keita (in photo) of the Republic of Sierra Leone has been appointed the new Chief Training Officer of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), he also doubles as Sierra Leone’s national contingent commander in Somalia.

Col. Keita emerged the best officer among other officers from various African countries including Nigeria, Rwanda, Ghana, Kenya that applied for the position of Chief Training Officer based at AMISOM Forces Headquarters, Mogadishu, Somalia.

Prior to his appointment he was the Director Defence Training, Education and Recruitment of the RSLAF.

Col. Keita will leave the shores of Freetown today to take to his new deployment in charge of all military and jungle training of AMISOM. While in Somalia he will be tasked also to train the Somalia Armed Forces. According to Ministry of Defence sources his assignment will last for a year but will be renewable annually.

Col. Keita will also be in charge of Sierra Leone’s contingent comprising of 850 officers and men, while the Battalion Commander is Lt. Col. Abu Conteh.

Col. Keita was enlisted and commissioned as a Lieutenant in 1987 and since then he has gone through the ranks and held various positions of command and control within the RSLAF.

Col. Keita was one of leading officers that fought during the RUF rebel war. He and his men were very instrumental in repelling various rebel onslaughts in various parts of the country including Tongo, Makeni, Bo, Koribondo, Port Loko and Kabala.

Col. Keita was among the first young officers of the Sierra Leone contingent in ECOMOG that fought in Liberia in 1990.

He has held major military positions within the RSLAF, Operations Officer Military Police (MP), Officer Commanding MP, Military Assistant to the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Commanding Officer for many battalions, Brigade Major, COS Freetown Garrison, SO2 Provost, Operation and Custodial MP, MA to Deputy Minister of Defence, Provost Marshall and CO joint Provost (MP) and Brigade Commander third brigade.

Col. Keita has successfully participated in all major military training including basic officer training, defence and strategic course held in China, Advance Command and staff course in Ghana, international peace support operational course at KAIPKTC, Ghana,  conflict and crisis management course, defence management course, DDR course, staff harmonization course, junior division staff course held in Kaduna, Nigeria.

Col. Keita attended Albert Academy, where he sat both his O and A level examinations and he proceeded to Ghana where he obtained a post graduate diploma in public administration (GIMPA), diploma in policy and management at the Tsianghua university, China.

Prior to his departure, he formally took leave of his boss Major General S. O. Williams and the Minister of Defence (Rtd) Major Palo Conteh, both of who commended him for his professionalism in the military and wished him good luck in his new assignment.

Col. Keita assured them that with the confidence reposed he will always ensure that the national flag flies high in Somalia.

By Sheikh Sahid

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