Sunday March 31 2013

Another al Shabaab commander shot dead

Brig. Ondoga says the al Shabaab are now a disoriented group.

Brig. Ondoga says the al Shabaab are now a disoriented group.  

By Risdel Kasasira

A senior al Shabaab commander was on Wednesday killed by African Union forces from the Ugandan contingent in an ambush in Lower Shabelle region of Somalia.

The statement issued by the Uganda contingent Public Information officer in Somalia, Maj. Henry Obbo, said Mohammed Abdu Saidi was killed in an ambush. “He fell as his group lost-out to us in a battle at Salini, some 70km south-west of Mogadishu, where the Al Qaeda linked group also lost to us military long-range communication gadget and assortment of weaponry and uniform.”

Maj. Obbo says Saidi was commanding a group of about 30-50 fighters in Bay region, 241km north-east of Mogadishu and had been operating around the wilderness of lower Shabelle. After Amisom simultaneously captured three crossing points on River Shabelle at Jannale, Aw Dheegle, and Barrire, they were cut off from their main group in the North.

The Uganda Contingent Commander, Brig. Michael Ondoga, said the “continuous elimination” of al Shabaab commanders will “further weaken the already disoriented group”. Other commanders killed by the Ugandan contingent forces in the recent past are Guludupu; who was in control of Gupta, Sokohola, and Huluwai areas, and Abdunuur of lower Shabelle in Somalia.

Meanwhile, the UN Security Council extended Amisom’s peace enforcement mandate by another 12 months effective March 7.