Ambassador Francisco Caetano Jose Madeira has formally assumed office today as the Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission (SRCC), for Somalia and Head of AMISOM. He takes over from his predecessor Ambassador Maman Sambo Sidikou.“I take over as the head of AMISOM at a critical point in the history of Somalia, when the country is entering a rigorous political phase, with elections planned next year. Our priority will be to ensure, that together with Somali security forces, we provide a secure environment conducive for state building. I commend my predecessor Ambassador Maman Sidikou, the entire team at AMISOM, the Federal Government and other partners for the massive achievements already made in stabilizing Somalia, and look forward to working with all to make even bigger strides,” said Ambassador Madeira on his arrival in Mogadishu. Given his experience in diplomacy, counter-terrorism as well as in peace and reconciliation initiatives across the continent, Ambassador Madeira is expected to lead in building on the tremendous achievements made by AMISOM on both the political and Security fronts over the past few years.