One UN: Supporting governance and peacebuilding across Kenya and Somalia

Monday, 13 October 2014

Mogadishu | UNOPS

Senior members of United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) visited Mogadishu this week for a landmark visit to Somalia.

In her first official visit as Under-Secretary General and Executive Director of UNOPS, Grete Faremo was welcomed by key Somali government officials, including Prime Minister Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed and the ministers of planning, finance, public works and national security.

Speaking after her meeting with the Prime Minister, Ms Faremo confirmed UNOPS is working with several branches of the Government of Somalia, supporting projects for the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM), the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISON), and the African Union (AU).

“We want to reaffirm our commitment to humanitarian activities, to provide advice on all the important work that is going on now to strengthen the political institutions, security and the justice sector, and we are looking forward to continuing this strong cooperation,” stated Ms Faremo.

Ms Faremo also had the opportunity to meet with Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Somalia, Nicholas Kay.

Her visit comes in the wake of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s recent statement on Somalia, stressing the importance of national reconciliation, and followed a visit to neighbouring Kenya, where she met with Acting President William Ruto and pledged to continue to support the Government’s Vision 2030 programme through the United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF).

While in Kenya, Ms Faremo met with a number of resident Under-Secretary-Generals, including the Executive Directors of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT), as well as the Director-General of the UN Office at Nairobi (UNON) and UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative, in line with the ‘Delivering as One’ UN coordination framework, stressing UNOPS commitment to integrating sustainability in all its operations and further strengthening its on-going cooperation with UN agencies.

Joining Ms Faremo was former Haitian Prime Minister and UNOPS Regional Director for Africa Garry Conille, who emphasized the importance of strong partnerships.“Developing national capacity is essential,” said Mr Conille, adding that: “Working in partnerships is fundamental to ensuring populations in conflict-affected countries receive the support they need.”

UNOPS undertakes a number of activities in Somalia, building roads, schools, bridges and public infrastructure for its partners in Somaliland, Puntland, and South Central Somalia.

In 2013 UNOPS supported the delivery of $69 million worth of activities for partners in the country, primarily through its support to the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS), who work with AMISOM, the Somali Police Force and the Federal Government of Somalia to mitigate the threat of explosive hazards and support the development of sustainable Somali structures to deal with these threats.

UNOPS Executive Director Grete Faremo and UNOPS Regional Director for Africa Garry Conille in Mogadishu for a meeting with key Somali government officials. Photo: UN Public Information Service/Tobin Jones