The African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) has organized a 10-day workshop to train South West State Police Force on handling public order crimes as security improves in most parts of the country.
The workshop on public order management is part of AMISOM’s transition plan to equip Somali security institutions and gradually hand over responsibilities to them in a condition-based process as per the United Nations Security Council resolution passed late last year.
The exercise, attended by 30 police officers drawn from various parts of the South West state, will focus on crowd control and how to handle various public crimes, among them, riots and violent demonstrations.
Speaking at the workshop, the Acting AMISOM Police Coordinator for South West State, John Ambayo, said the aim of the training is to teach the officers how to deal with acts of public disorder in the region.
“We have peaceful events like public celebrations which need to be policed and then sometimes we also have incidents of public disorder, the riotous situations, strikes for which we need to equip the police officers to handle,” Mr. Ambayo, who is also the Team Leader of Police Reforms Advisors in South West State, said.
He noted that since peace has resumed in most regions in the country, after years of civil war, there was need for police to start focusing on how to handle public order crimes in the new environment.
The AMISOM Police officer advised those undergoing the training to view individuals involved in riots and strikes as momentary opponents and use less force, when restoring order, to minimize casualties.
The Director General of the Ministry of Security in South West state, Mohamed Yasin Abdullahi, praised AMISOM Police for mentoring their counterparts in Somalia noting that officers in the region will now have skills to deal with public order crimes.
Similar sentiments were shared by the Commander of Mines Action in the state, Ibrahim Hussein Hassan, who said the workshop was critical for officers in Bay region in their efforts to restore peace and security.
“This training that opened here is about upholding human rights and improving the relations between the police and the public,” said Mr. Hassan as he commended AMISOM Police for organizing the exercise.