August 17, 2017

Boost for KDF soldiers in Somalia as UN refunds Kenya sh7.9 billion

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Kenyan troops fighting Al-Shabaab militants in Somalia have received a major boost after UN refunded Kenya Sh7.9bn.

In the year ending in June 2017, cites BBC, the National Treasury received sh6.78 billion from the UN.

This amount was in excess since projected refund was sh6.44 billion.

UN reimbursements are done on a quarterly basis but have in the past failed to meet its refund deadlines.

This has sparked protest from the country’s top heads.

It is believed the early and excess refund to the Treasury was influenced by a meeting between UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and President Uhuru Kenyatta while on an official visit to Kenya in March.

During the visit, he pledged regular funding for Kenyan soldiers who are part of African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom) to strengthen operations geared towards total elimination of Al-Shabaab.

BBC had earlier reported that the UN had withheld payments for the 22,000 soldiers under Amisom over “accounting issues”.

Each Amisom soldier gets $1,028 (Sh103, 828) per month provided by the International Community.

From this amount, respective government’s deduct $200 (Sh20, 200) for administrative costs. About $800 (Sh83, 628) is what each soldier gets every month.

UN releases the funds to Amisom once accounts from the previous payment are signed off.

Amisom comprises soldiers from Kenya, Burundi, Sierra Leone Uganda and Burundi.

Kenya was Okayed by the UN Security Council to have its soldiers join Amisom in 2012; a year after The Treasury full funded their operation in Somalia.

The nod by UN’s Security Council means that Kenya does not fully fund the operations of its soldiers in Somalia.

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