Gen Francis Ogolla takes oath of office to become Chief of Defence Forces

General Ogolla

General Francis Ogolla when he took oath of office as Chief of Defence Forces on April 29, 2023.

Photo credit: PCS

New Kenya Defence Forces leaders took oath of office on Saturday morning at State House in Nairobi. 

During the low-key event, President William Ruto expressed confidence in his pick for the military leadership as Chief of Defense Forces (CDF),  General Francis Ogolla.

Vice Chief of Defense Forces (VCDF) Lt General Jonah Mwangi was also sworn in during the that lasted just under 40 minutes.

The new apex commanding officers of the Kenya Defense Forces (KDF) were announced by President Ruto on Friday in a changeup that will see the Airforce branch of the military take command in a rotational system that sees the military command passed around all three branches of the defense forces.

This comes following the retirement of General Robert Kibochi (Rtd), a veteran military man from the Kenya Army. His predecessor Gen Samson Mwathethe (Rtd) was navy.

President Ruto on Saturday said he was confident he had picked the right man for the job following weeks of internal deliberation.

“ In considering your appointment I assessed your background, where you come from, what you have done, your journey in the military and am satisfied that you merit the office. You have my confidence and the confidence of the government of Kenya to discharge your responsibilities in your new office,” Dr Ruto said.

The president also challenged the new military bosses to uphold the professionalism of the military and uphold standards set by the Kenya Defense Forces in the region.

“It is my expectation that professional standards of the Kenyan military will be observed under your leadership. We do not expect to see ethnicity, bias or anything other than professionalism,” the president said.

At the same time the head of state lauded outgoing CDF Gen Robert Kibochi (Rtd) terming him a great leader who has served in both difficult and good times.

During the ceremony, six other General Officers were also invested with new honours.

The General officers comprised of Major General David Kipkemboi, Maj Gen Stephen Mutuku, Maj Gen John Maison, Maj Gen Abdulkadir Burji, Brigadier Anthony Rotich and Brigadier Alfred Muihuri.