Saturday 16 August 2014 marked a special day in UNDOF history as the tunes of the RFMF Brass band reverberated through the Camp Faouar Parade Square. The UNDOF Force Commander and Head of Mission, Lieutenant General Iqbal Singh Singha officiated the sombre hand over between the outgoing CO, Lt Col Sitiveni Qiliho and the incoming CO, Lt Col Isoa Loanakadavu. The solemn occasion also saw the respective handing over of the Regimental Sergeant Major’s Pace stick between the incoming and outgoing RSMs.
Lt General Singha, in commending Lt Col Sitiveni Qiliho for his sound leadership remarked, “I wish to take this opportunity to congratulate the Commanding Officer 1FIR Lt Col Sitiveni Qiliho for his dedication to duty and leadership qualities that has led to the successful tenure of his battalion. I wish to thank him for his positivity and whole hearted support of the mission in a much matured manner”. The Force Commander went on to welcome Lt Col Loanakadavu saying that he was confident that the second rotation would undoubtedly live up to the high standards set by their predecessors, and will continue to keep the UNDOF flag flying high. He further added that the Fiji Contingent’s first rotation took over from the Philippine and Indian Log Battalions on 28 Jul 2013 at a critical time when things were tough in the mission area. Rightfully, the FC added that such was a time when he found it appropriate for him to call the Fijian Contingent as the “saviours of the mission”.