Peacekeepers to Haiti urged to be professional
A third contingent of Rwandan peace keepers to Haiti under the Formed Police Unit 3 (FPU3) have been urged to be disciplined as they execute their duties professionally during their mission to Haiti.
The advice was given by Inspector General of Police (IGP) Emmanuel Gasana during a pre-deployment briefing held at the police General Headquarters in Kacyiru.
“Execute your duties professionally and strive to raise our country’s flag high to make Rwanda a replica country. Rwanda has earned itself a good name on the international scene,” Gasana said on Wednesday.
A contingent of 160 officers under FPU3 is set to depart for the mission to serve under the UN Mission for Stabilization in Haiti (MINUSTAH) mandate.
The contingent led by Chief Supt Desire Twizere will replace the same number under Formed Police Unit 2 (FPU) which successfully completed its nine months mandate and scheduled to return on September 28.
These officers while in Haiti provide humanitarian assistance, conduct patrols and guard VIPs and key installations. They also help in crowd control and provide security of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).
The first FPU1 contingent comprising of 160 police officers was deployed in Haiti in January 30, 2011 and was replaced by the same number under FPU2 on December 15, 2011.
The mission was deployed mainly to oversee relief activities after the 7.0 magnitude earthquake hit the country in 2010, killing over 200,000 people and leaving millions homeless.
Rwanda National Police maintains over 450 peacekeepers serving under the UN missions in Liberia, Ivory Coast, Darfur, South Sudan and Haiti.
Rwanda, whose officers have been awarded for their professionalism and discipline in executing their mission duties by the UN, was ranked the eighth country in providing police peacekeepers worldwide by the international community.
The UN also ranked Rwanda the first out of 84 countries in providing female individual police officers. The United Nations has also requested Rwanda to deploy a contingent of FPU in Liberia next year.
The returning contingent suffered a loss after one of the officers was accidentally shot dead by a colleague during night patrols last week.