According to a press released published yesterday:
The African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) today assumed formal command of the Kenyan forces in Southern Somalia at a colorful ceremony held at the Kenyan Department of Defense headquarters in Nairobi. A total of 4664 Kenyan personnel are being integrated into AMISOM, bringing the AMISOM force strength to slightly over 17,000 troops out of a total authorized strength of 17,731.
Kenya is suffering from the same budget crises spreading throughout the global economy, and the country’s move to integrate its forces into AMISOM can be seen as mostly financially-motivated.
Finance minister Njeru Githae and Central Bank of Kenya governor Njuguna Ndung’u stated last month:
The recent decision to integrate Kenyan troops within the UN contingent will help minimize their impact on the budget.
It costs about 7,000 Kenyan shilling (SH) (or US$83) per day and SH200,000 ($2,380) per month for the KDF to maintain one soldier in its Somalia operations.
Now that thousands of KDF soldiers will be under AMISOM, Kenya expects the United Nations (UN) to reimburse the country SH7.5 billion ($89 million) in the 2011/12 fiscal window and SH15.7 billion ($187 million) in the next–a huge financial windfall totalling about $276 million for the Kenyan Defense Department.
It remains unclear how much the UN and AMISOM will remit to Kenya out of the aforementioned amounts.
However, it is expected that AMISOM’s total budget will rise from $300 to $550 million with the addition of Kenya troops.