UN decorates Rwandan Police peacekeepers in Haiti
The officers serving as Individual Police Officers (IPOs) under the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) were decorated on February 9 in a ceremony held in Port Au Prince.
The Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) and Head of Mission in Haiti, Sandra Honore, who presided over the medal parade, expressed gratitude for the professionalism and discipline exhibited by the decorated officers.
“You served with dignity, dedication and hard work and it is a pride to the UN,” Honore said.
She went on to appreciate the role played by the Rwandan government in respect to gender equality in peacekeeping operations, sighting an example of Haiti where out of 33 IPOs, 29 are female.
About 30 percent of Formed Police Unit (FPU) contingents in Haiti, Central African Republic (CAR) and South Sudan are also females.
Sandra thanked the officers for their dedicated services to local security organs and going beyond their mandate to support local communities.
The award ceremony attended by the Rwandan community in Haiti was also graced by high ranking government and MINUSTAH officials including Acting Police Commissioner Jaime Vigil, Deputy Force commander, Brig. Gen Andres Fuentealba and Acting Director of Mission, Support Clarck Toes, among others.
The contingent commander of RWAFPU 6 in Haiti, Commissioner of Police (CP) Joseph Mugisha, also graced the event.
Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Claude Bizimana, the contingent commander of Rwandan IPOs in Haiti pledged RNP’s continued support towards peace and security.
He expressed Rwanda’s commitment towards contributing to peace building despite the existing challenges and threats in missions.
“The appreciated work done was achieved by upholding Rwandan values throughout the mission” said SSP Bizimana.
He thanked the MINUSTAH leadership for the support throughout their one year tour of duty, which he said helped them to execute their peacekeeping mission effectively and maintained the UN standards.
Currently, Rwanda maintains about 900 police peacekeepers in seven missions and four Police Professionals. About 750 officers serve under the five Formed Police Units deployed in South Sudan, Central African Republic and Haiti.