On 31 August 2016, Rwanda Defence Force conducted relief in place for its Air Force personnel who have concluded their one year tour of duty under the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS).
At 7:00 AM, a total number of 165 officers and other ranks making up the Rwanda Aviation Unit V (RAU V) under command of Lt Col Innocent Munyengango, left Kigali International Airport (KIA) for Juba/ South Sudan Republic, to replace their colleagues of RAU IV.
While briefing last week the leaving RAU contingent made of pilots, technicians and logisticians, the Air Force Chief of Staff, Brig Gen Charles Karamba recalled them to maintain discipline and dedication to their mission during their one year tour of duty under UNMISS .
The returning RAU IV arrived at 11:00 am at KIA. On behalf of the RDF Chief of Defence Staff, they were received by the RDF J3, in Charge of Operations and Training, Brig Gen Chris Murari.
He congratulated the contingent for the good work done in UNMISS. “We have been following your day to day activities and received good reports on your conduct during operations, commitment at work and discipline. We thank you for being good ambassadors of Rwanda”, Gen Murari said. He also urged the contingent to keep the same spirit in their new tasks ahead.
Throughout their one year tour of duty, RAU IV played a significant role in supporting UNMISS’ operations, by among others enabling troop movements, conducting reconnaissance flights and air patrols, providing medical transportation as well as administrative and logistics flights.Over the last 12 months under UNMISS, RAU IV performed 809 flights, transported 12,694 passengers and airlifted 1,455,000 Kgs of cargo to different places of the entire UNMISS area of responsibility.
Rwanda Air Force maintains 6 helicopters in UNMISS and has its main Base in Juba, with an additional Base in Malakal, Upper Nile State in South Sudan.
The relieved RAU IV was under command of Lt Col Bernard Niyomugabo.