AMISOM troops in the Hiiran region are renovating Bulla Burdo airport to facilitate commercial and humanitarian access to the town, movement to which has been obstructed by Al Shabaab terror. The AMISOM Djiboutian troops have also constructed Bulla Burdo Maternity Hospital, the first the town has had as well as facilitated establishment for the town’s radio station. Equipment for the hospital is expected to be delivered soon, while five water wells have also been dug for the area residents.
Before its capture from Al Shabaab March 2014, Bulla Burdo served as a supply nerve center for the militants and a base from which attacks on the population were launched. Following their defeat from the town, the militants have now resorted to hit and run attacks on roads linking the town neighboring towns, limiting the movement of the population and frustrating economic activity.
The renovation of the airport, previously in a despondent state is now expected to provide a new route through which humanitarian aid can be delivered to the town and commercial trade revamped.
Tens of soldiers were deployed to clear the thicket and are working with the population to make the airport usable. The airport will connect Bulla Burdo to major towns including Mogadishu, Beletweyne, Mogadishu, Galkayo, Baidoa and Kismayo.
AMISOM Sector IV Commander Col. Abourahman Abdi dhembil and the AMISOM Djiboutian Contingent Commander Col. Osman Doubad together with other senior officials have visited the town to assess progress on activities the mission is undertaking to improve the lives of the population.
The AMISOM Djiboutian Contingent Command Col. Osman Doubad said “the purpose of our visit today was supervision of the AMISOM troops and SNA that are stationed in Bulla Burdo. Secondly we have met with the district administrators, the elders and officials and discussed the current situation and challenges faced in the district. We have toured the airport that has been under construction for the last three months by AMISOM troops. Today we have seen progress, the airport is near completion and we hope it will soon be operational”.
Abdiaziz Dulow Abdi, the district commissioner of Bulla Burdo expressed gratitude for the support AMISOM has extended towards stabilization and reconstruction of the district.
“We had discussions on many issues among them, the airport which they are renovating following our request. Work is ongoing to make it possible for planes to land. The delegation toured the airport and they were pleased with the progress and the effort of the Djiboutian troops in Bulla Burdo. Work will be completed soon and flights will hopefully start as soon as possible. We also toured Radio Bulla Burdo station, facilitated by AMISOM Djiboutian troops. We have also toured and opened Bulla Burde Maternity hospital commissioned by AMISOM Djiboutian troops since there was no maternity hospital in the district. We toured those three places,” said the District Commissioner.
AMISOM Djiboutian Contingent Commander Col. Osman Doubad said the visit was very fruitful, commending the troops on the ground for the noble work they are doing beyond providing security for the residents but also addressing key issues of their livelihood.