The United Nations Department of Peacekeeping Operations has organised an all-female training course for Rwanda National Police aimed at assessing individual officers to serve in UN peacekeeping missions and special political missions.
The 12-day training, which started yesterday, is the first of its kind, and Rwanda National Police is the first Force to benefit from the programme, according course director, Lanyuy Marti, who is also an instructor and senior planning officer for Monusco.
During the opening of the training, Lanyuy said the choice of Rwanda for the maiden training was because of the “valuable lessons” offered by Rwanda National Police.
“From what we have seen and heard about Rwanda National Police, we are convinced that the choice of ther country was no mistake,” he said.
“Many Police contributing countries have valuable lessons to learn from Rwanda’s policing tradition in terms of discipline, organisation and the continuous search for excellence.”
The training, being attended by 166 women officers, is being held at Police headquarters in Kacyiru.
Exams to select the best candidates for the operations will be conducted next month but the organisers said there is no definite number of officers they would be taking.
UN pro-women officers drive
The United Nations in August 2009 launched a campaign aimed at recruiting more female officers both in national police services and into UN Police operations around the world.
The target is to increase female officers by 20 per cent by the end of 2014, and, according to Lanyuy, the target will be attained.
Rwanda has more than 75 women Police officers deployed in six countries, including Haiti, Mali, South Sudan, Ivory Coast, Liberia and Central Africa Republic.
Juvenal Marizamunda, the deputy Inspector General of Police in charge of administration and personnel, said the training will enhance capacity building as well increase the number of Rwanda’s women officers in peacekeeping operations.
“Trainers come from various countries, with vast experience in policing, which will benefit our female officers. Piloting this training in Rwanda is a great opportunity for our country, since women have also contributed in different national development agendas,” said Marizamunda.
On Sunday, Police announced its latest peacekeeping deployment in Central African Republic (CAR).
Looking up to Rwanda
A contingent of 140 Police officers under Rwanda Formed Police Unit (RWAFPU) started departing yesterday in four shifts to the CAR for a one-year peacekeeping mission.
The contingent, led by CSP Benoit Kayijuka, includes 14 females.
“The UN department of peacekeeping operations is looking up with expectations that the Republic of Rwanda will contribute in reducing the current wide gap existing between male and female police officers deployed in police operations,” Lanyuy said.
“In these crucial areas, there are tasks that female police officers have a comparative advantage over their male colleagues in addressing, including investigating gender-based violence-related cases, counselling, among others.”
Rwanda is the first country to deploy Police peacekeepers under the United Nations Multi-dimensional Integrated Stabilisation Mission in CAR.