KENYA and the United Kingdom have signed a new five-year Defence Cooperation Agreement.
The agreement, signed at the Ministry of Defence offices in London by Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary for Defence, Monica Juma, and her UK counterpart, Defence Secretary Ben Wallace (pictured) will anchor the defence priorities between the two nations over the next five years.
The new Defence Cooperation Agreement (DCA) once ratified by the Kenyan and UK parliaments, will allow militaries from both countries to share expertise, experience and techniques, making both forces more effective.
UK’s Defence Secretary Ben Wallace, said, ‘Kenya has long been our defence partner of choice in East Africa and, in a more uncertain world, we will continue to stand shoulder-to-shoulder as we tackle the threats of tomorrow.’
Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary for Defence Monica Juma, said, ‘Today, Rt Hon Ben Wallace and I reaffirmed our commitment to continue deepening the defence cooperation between our two nations.
‘The framework underpinning this strategic relationship is the Defence Cooperation Agreement which has become an invaluable tool for enhancing the competencies of our defence forces. Overall our cooperation continues to significantly improve the ability of our forces to operate effectively in high-threat environments.’
The current DCA has had many successes over the past five years of military cooperation. Under the agreement, the UK has provided an annual training of over 1100 KDF soldiers, with courses in the UK, or with UK military training teams in Kenya.
Further training has also been provided through the UK-funded Counter-IED Wing at the Humanitarian Peace Support School (HPSS) in Embakasi.
Since its opening in 2016, over 2,000 military and police from 22 countries have been trained in CIED skills and 40 CIED instructors developed, significantly improving the ability of African Union (AU) forces to operate effectively in high-threat environments, including against Al-Shabaab militants.
The signing of the DCA comes six months after the two defence secretaries met in Nairobi, agreeing a refreshed Security Compact to deepen wider stability and security cooperation, part of the Kenya-UK strategic partnership.