Mogadishu, 4 October 2017 – Senior leaders from the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) are meeting in Mogadishu to seek more effective ways, to communicate Somalia’s and AMISOM’s successes.
The two-day Strategic Communications Master Class, which opened yesterday
will brainstorm on communication challenges, especially in the un-governed digital space, how to mitigate them; and also seek ways to align AMISOM’s strategic communications needs, with the needs of the Federal Government of Somalia.
“It is important that we have coordinated communications, because we have only one enemy and that enemy is violent extremism in the form of Al-Shabaab, it is an enemy that seeks out signs of disunity,” Mr. Abdirahman Yusuf Yarisow, the Federal Minister of Information said in his remarks during the official opening of the Master Class.
“To win the information war, we need the sheer volume of our messages to drown out Al-Shabaab and force them into irrelevance,” Minister Yarisow stressed. “We have before us an opportunity to write a new positive chapter in our proud country’s history.”
The Master Class has brought together senior personnel from AMISOM, among them the AMISOM Force Commander Lt. Gen. Osman Noor Soubagleh, the Deputy AU Special Representative for Somalia, Simon Mulongo; the Deputy Police Commissioner, Christine Alalo; Chiefs of Staff from the military, police and civilian components of AMISOM; sector commanders and spokespersons among others.
“It is the winning of the hearts and minds of the people that will determine the real victory of the war; because we can be winning battles but not actually winning the war,” Mr. Mulongo told participants.
He added; “For us to resolve the contradictions in Somalia, we must win the hearts and minds of the population by transferring them from the current mixture of mindsets to the one we want in terms of ideology, in terms of rallying them behind a united effort in nation building.”
The AMISOM Deputy Head of Mission emphasized the importance of winning the war on terror from the communications front, in addition to winning the battle against Al Shabaab on the frontline.
Through the Master Class, AMISOM hopes to enhance the Mission’s visibility, align and improve its messaging capabilities, as it continues to support the Somalia’s stabilization process. The meeting ends today.