Safety Measures Strengthened to Protect Peacekeepers

On 4 June 2020 at 12:14

Rwandan Police peacekeepers in South Sudan will continue to execute their peacekeeping mandate under strengthened measures to observe the World Health Organization (WHO) safety guidelines against novel Coronavirus.

Rwanda National Police spokesperson, CP John Bosco Kabera said that despite the death of one of the Rwandan Police peacekeeper of COVID-19, who was serving under the UN Mission in South Sudan, measures are being strengthened to protect the peacekeepers.

"RNP is saddened with the death of PC Mbabazi Enid, who was part of Rwanda FPU-1 contingent deployed in Malakal, South Sudan. We condole with the bereaved family. We honour PC Mbabazi for her selfless service is ensuring safety and security for her country and restoring peace in other countries. She died in the name of security and peace," said CP Kabera.

"We have jointly stepped up measures to further guarantee the safety of peacekeepers including educating them on the spread of the pandemic and effective protection," CP Kabera said.

In her condolence message, UNMISS Police Commissioner, Unaisi L. Vuniwaqa said:

“It is with deep regret that the news of the sudden demise of our dear colleague Enid MBABAZI is received. The entire UNPOL Component grieve the contingent as well as her dear family back at home. We honour her contribution to the mission and the people of South Sudan.

On behalf of the Component,we wish to convey our profound condolences and pray that her soul rests in peace. May the blessings of the Almighty be with her family and all Rwanda FPU members here in South Sudan.”

UNMISS FPU Coordinator, Lt. Col. Mikhail Bychikhin also said: “… we convey to your personnel our deepest words of sympathy and condolences for the loss of your comrade.”

The Special Representative of the Secretary General to UNMISS David Shearer, in his guidelines against COVID-19 to protect peacekeepers issued back in April, among others, urges those feeling sick and experiencing coronavirus-like symptoms, such as fever, cough, shortness of breath or breathing difficulty to stay in their accommodation, call the supervisor and the UNMISS medical clinic.

Supervisors are also required to consider whether some staff can work from their accommodation instead of the office. Where necessary to maintain a physical presence in the workplace, the team may take turns at working from home and the office to minimize unnecessary contact.

The SRSG also emphasized the WHO safety guidelines; when you are at work, wash your hands frequently with soap and water or use hand sanitizer, not to shake hands with others; social distancing, to sanitize their equipment regularly; avoiding holding meetings or where deemed necessary to ensure the meeting room is large enough for participants to sit at least one meter apart.

Rwandan Police peacekeepers in South Sudan will continue to execute their peacekeeping mandate under strengthened measures to observe WHO safety guidelines