Nigerian policewoman honoured by UN for peacekeeping work

Chief Superintendent Catherine Ugorji of the Nigerian police and serving with the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) has been selected by the United Nations as one of two runners-up for the prestigious UN Woman Police Officer of the Year award for 2020.

“Through both her words and actions, United Nations Police Officer Ugorji exemplifies the best of United Nations policing,” said Under-Secretary-General for Peace Operations Jean-Pierre Lacroix.

Of the 1,300 UN policewomen deployed in UN peacekeeping operations, twenty-one were nominated for the award, TheNation writes.

The year’s winner Chief Inspector Doreen Malambo of Zambia, who serves with the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), will receive the award during a virtual ceremony presided over by Mr. Lacroix on Tuesday, 3 November.

Superintendent Rebecca Nnanga of Cameroon, serving with the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA), is the other runner-up.

UN Police Advisor Luis Carrilho, the UN’s “top cop,’ congratulated Chief Superintendent Ugorji for being chosen as a runner-up and said:  “MINUSMA United Nations Police Officer Ugorji’s leadership of three Formed Police Units in Gao has been remarkable, and Catherine has introduced tactical operations that have been instrumental in reducing crime in the area, in support of the Malian security forces and the host population.

“In addition to this very demanding role, Chief Superintendent Ugorji has worked diligently to improve living conditions for women police officers so they can serve safely and with dignity.”

The UN Woman Police Officer of the Year award was established in 2011 to recognize the exceptional contributions of female police officers to UN peacekeeping and to promote the empowerment of women.

The award carries even greater significance this year given the 20th anniversary of Security Council resolution 1325 on women, peace and security.

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