USS Samuel B. Roberts Arrives in Mombasa, Kenya

USS Samuel B. Roberts (FFG 58), along with embarked staff arrived in Mombasa, Kenya, July 19, to begin their involvement with Africa Partnership Station (APS) East’s 2011 Kenyan hub.

The Kenyan hub brings more than 85 maritime professionals from seven partner nations together for training designed to improve capacity and capability in the region. Samuel B. Roberts provides APS with a platform to give hands-on experience in a real, working environment.

Samuel B. Roberts commanding officer, Cmdr. Angel Cruz, said the hub is an opportunity for him and his crew to build relationships, share knowledge with African partners and show off their ship.

“The Samuel B. Roberts crew and I are extremely excited about the opportunity of working with the partnering nations of APS East,” said Cruz. “It’s a unique and worthwhile mission, and an opportunity to engage and learn from each other. I think the integration of our different cultures will only enhance and enrich the training with our African partners.”

Hub participants will take part in courses including small boat operations, maritime intelligence, senior enlisted leadership, and search and rescue planning.

These courses will allow partner nations to more effectively establish mechanisms for sub-regional cooperation, provide maritime enforcement capability and establish maritime infrastructure.

The hub will also include visits from Commander, Combined Joint-Task Force, Horn of Africa, Rear Adm. Michael T. Franken, and Kenyan navy Commander, Major Gen. Ngewa Mukala.

Sailors from Samuel B. Roberts will also undertake community relations projects to help foster trust and goodwill with the Kenyan public. The hub will end with a graduation ceremony July 23. Samuel B. Roberts will then travel to Tanzania to continue APS training.

APS is an international security cooperation initiative, facilitated by Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa, aimed at strengthening global maritime partnerships through training and collaborative activities to improve maritime safety and security in Africa.

Samuel B. Roberts, an Oliver Hazard Perry class guided-missile frigate, is homeport at Naval Station Mayport, Fla., and is on a scheduled deployment to the Sixth Fleet area of responsibility.

Source: navy, July 20, 2011;