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Life of the Late Chief of the Kenya Defence Forces, General Francis Ogolla

Francis Ogolla, Chief of Defence Forces (CDF), was sadly killed in a helicopter accident in the Sindar district of Elgeyo Marakwet County. His demise comes only a year after obtaining the prestigious position.

In April of the previous year, President William Ruto promoted General Ogolla to the rank of General and nominated him to lead the Kenya Defence Forces (KDF). He succeeded General Robert Kibochi, who resigned at the obligatory age of 62.

General Ogolla was chosen in accordance with the ‘Tonje Rules,’ a rotating framework that governs CDF appointments. President Ruto’s decision to appoint Ogolla, who was then the Kenya Air Force Commander, followed this routine. It was required upon him to appoint Ogolla, as his predecessor, General Kibochi, came from the Army and succeeded General Samson Mwathethe from the Navy.

General Ogolla was born in Siaya County on February 12, 1962, and began his military career by graduating as a cadet from the KDF on May 2, 1984. Within a year, he was promoted to second lieutenant and stationed at Moi Air Base, where he received pilot training.

Prior to taking on the post of CDF, General Ogolla held several high-ranking roles in the KDF. These include serving as the Commanding Officer of the Tactical Flight Wing at Laikipia Air Base in 2007 and then as the Base Commander from 2008 until 2014.

His advancements were significant milestones in his career; he was promoted to Brigadier on April 10, 2012, and then appointed as Deputy Air Force Commander. On July 13, 2018, he was promoted to Major General and assumed command of the Kenya Air Force.

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On July 23, 2021, he was promoted to Lieutenant General and appointed as the Vice Chief of the Defence Forces. He held this position until April 28, 2023, when President Ruto elevated him to the rank of General and assigned him the duties of the Chief of the Defence Forces.

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In addition to his military training, General Ogolla attended Egerton University and graduated with a diploma in International Studies and Military Science. He continued his education with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, Armed Conflict, and Peace Studies and a Masters of Arts in International Studies from the University of Nairobi.

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Throughout his distinguished career, General Ogolla won various honors, including presidential awards such as the Moran of the Golden Heart (MGH), Elder of the Burning Spear (EBS), and a Head of State Commendation. His passion and service to the country will be cherished and honored by everyone.

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