In 2003, in support of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement and Security Council Resolution 1509 (2003), and the consolidation of peace and security in Liberia; the UN Police provides support for security reform by “assisting the Government of Liberia in monitoring and restructuring the police force of Liberia, consistent with democratic policing, to develop a civilian police training program, and to otherwise assist in the training of civilian police in cooperation with ECOWAS, international organizations and interested States.”
In line with the above, UNPOL assists the LNP in areas vital to the reform and restructuring process; assists with the implementation of programs and initiatives, including focus on leadership, community policing and public relations, investigation of police misconduct, operational supervision, crime investigations and of course, administration and planning, continual training and human resource development; and provides limited operational support from UN Formed Police Units when needed to ensure the maintenance of law and order in Liberia.
The current mandate, UN SCR 1836 of September 2008, endorsed the Secretary General’s recommendation to increase the number of personnel deployed as part of UNMIL’s police component in order to provide strategic advice and expertise in specialized fields, provide operational support to regular policing activities and react to regular policing activities, and react to urgent security situations. Therefore, the current authorized strength of the police component in Liberia includes 498 UNPOL Advisors, 32 Correction Advisory Officers and 7 Formed Police Units. While the primary advisory focus remains on the development of the Liberia National Police, UNPOL also provides a small compliment of advisors to the Liberia Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization. The UNPOL is comprised of police officers from 38 countries. The UNPOL has a female representation of about 15% of the authorized strength, including a female Formed Police Unit from India.
Within the UNPOL, the primary departments essential to mandated activities of training, reform, restructuring and operational support to LNP include:
Training and Development
Reform and Restructuring
Research and Planning
Emergency Response Unit
Structure of UNPOL
Under the authority of a UN Police Commissioner and Deputy Police Commissioner, these departments are staffed by advisor under the direct supervision of a professional level UNPOL Coordinator, UNPOL project manager or UNPOL Senior Advisor. These departments are overwhelmingly co-located with the Liberia National Police, including UNPOL Team Site locations in all counties and in specific geographical zones in the capital city of Monrovia. A UN Police coordinator or senior advisor heads each department, in which UNPOL advisors, mentors, trainers, and monitors work closely with their Liberian counterparts. The partnership helps to build both individual competency and integrity and organizational competencies within the Liberian police; and in assisting the Liberia National Police in strengthening community police coordination and public trust.
There are also many notable supporting activities and units within UNPOL undertaken not only in cooperation with the Liberia National Police; but also other UNMIL and UN Family members in Liberia. UNMIL Press and Public Affairs office promotes and advertises achievements and sensitizes the general public through a variety of radio programmes and other related activities. UN Police Community Relations actively participates in supporting community awareness and crime prevention programs aimed at building public confidence and enhancing positive interaction between citizens and the police. UNDP provides a resource to administer bi-lateral funding of police development projects under the umbrella of security sector reform, among others; UNICEF, UNIFEM, UNHCR also work closely with UNPOL and the Liberia National Police on issues of women and children protection, human rights and crimes against vulnerable groups.
Key Accomplishments in support of the development of the Liberia National Police include:
- Graduation of over 3,500 new recruits and serving LNP offices from a basic training program at the National Police Training Academy
- Assisted the Government of Liberia in the deactivation of over serving 2,200 LNP officers who did not meet agreed minimum criteria for service in the “new” LNP or whom had surpassed statutory age and length of service requirements
- Construction and renovations projects at the National Police Training Academy including classrooms, offices, male and female dormitories
- Advanced and specialist police training to over 500 LNP officers
- Development and Implementation of 23 LNP policies and procedures, including a revised LNP Duty Manual
- Recruitment and training of over 400 female LNP officers (including Class 33 and 34 that are currently in training); including the development and implementation of a government endorsed female educational support program.
- Instititution of and advice to an LNP Change Management Team
- Advice to LNP and the subsequent development of a 3-5 year LNP Strategic Plan 2009 – 2013
- Facilitated training and equipping of a 300 officer LNP Police Support Unit for disorder control in Nigeria
- Development and ongoing training, equipping and capacity building of a 500 officer, armed, Emergency Response Unit (Class One and Two, comprised of 139 officers including 1 female have thus far graduated from the program)
- Strengthened LNP command and control and executive decision making through the institution of a Senior Advisory Program with the executive tier of the LNP management
- Strengthening of LNP administration and payroll through a verification of all LNP officers through physical presence and commensurate examination, accounting and updating of individual personnel records and payroll status.
- Renovation or construction of over 35 LNP facilities in coordination and cooperation of key stakeholders at the international and national levels, and bi-lateral funding contributions from many donor countries.
FONTE: UNMIL WEBSITE