Women in peacekeeping undergo specialised training in Information and Communications Technology
ENTEBBE – A specialised course on Information and Communications Technology aimed at equipping women in the military and Police with ICT skills is ongoing at the United Nations Signals Academy (UNSA), located inside the UN Regional Service Centre Entebbe (RSCE) in Uganda.
The two-week course, the second in a series of outreach training programmes for women in disciplined forces, will enable them operate effectively in peacekeeping operations. The inaugural course was held in November 2016.
Thirty-nine (39) female military and signals personnel from 17 countries including four from the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) are attending the course.
Other participants include representatives of the United Nations and the government of Japan.
Addressing the participants via a video link from New York, Mr. Anthony O’Mullane, the Director of the UN Department of Field Support Communications and Technology Division (DFS/ICTD), said the course would enable more female military and police personnel to take part in peacekeeping operations.
Samuel Leal, the UN Signals Academy Programme Manager affirmed the academy’s dedication to promoting gender equality and women’s empowerment in peacekeeping.
He cited the UN Security Council Resolution 2122 (2013), which encourages Troop and Police Contributing Countries, to increase the number of women in UN peacekeeping operations.
The training combines theoretical and practical modules on UN-owned equipment, standard operating procedures, gender issues and familiarization with the larger UN operational environment.
In her remarks at the official opening of the training, Mrs. Safia Boly, the Chief of the RSCE encouraged participants to strive for excellence in their careers.
Mr. Yutaka Nakamura, the deputy Ambassador of Japan in Uganda, expressed his government’s commitment to offering support to peace and security training.
Japan has provided support to the programme from inception. Additional support has been received from the US Africa Command (USAFRICOM), the Government of Germany, United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) and the United Nations Support Office in Somalia (UNSOS).
To date, the UN Signals Academy has trained 87 women, out of a total of 1,222 signals personnel.
The UN Signals Academy was founded in 2015 as an outcome of the First International Symposium on Technology in Peacekeeping held in Brindisi, Italy, through a strategic partnership between the UN and supporting member states.
The academy provides standardized and mission-specific training to military and police signals experts from TCCs/PCCs and regional organizations such as the African Union (AU), to improve the performance and efficiency of signals personnel deployed in peacekeeping missions.