Accra, May 29, 2014 – United Nations peacekeepers, made up of military, police and civilian personnel from various countries, including Ghana, have been operating for the past 66 years with the establishment in May 1948 of the first UN peacekeeping mission known as UN Truce Supervision Organisation to help bring stability in the Middle East. However, it was only in December 2002 that the UN General Assembly designated May 29 as the International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers. Hence this year is the 11th commemoration of the International of UN Peacekeepers.
Ghana’s involvement in peacekeeping operations dates back to the 1960s when she first deployed troops as part of the UN Peacekeeping Operations (PKO) in the then Congo Republic (ONUC). Ghana has since been a consistent contributor to UN peace restoration efforts. Today, she ranks the 8th on the list of 122 countries contributing to UN peacekeeping personnel with a current record of 236 police, 65 military experts and 2,691 troops totaling 2992 (286 female and 2706 male) uniformed personnel serving on nine UN peacekeeping operation missions out of the 17 DPKO-led peace operations as at April this year.
It is therefore not surprising that many developed countries readily assisted to build the state-of-the-art Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) here in Ghana to train both UN, Regional and sub-Regional personnel for PSOs at the operational level. KAIPTC receives assistance from many foreign countries includingthe US, Canada, Japan, India the EU.
The Ghana Police Services also helps to build local police capacities in areas of police operations, administration, criminal investigations, community policing, election monitoring, and public order management.
Personnel of the Ghana Prisons Service deployed to peacekeeping missions are mainly engaged in Mentoring, Advising, Coaching and Training of local staff. Other duties include developing policies, procedures, systems, reviewing of existing prisons legislations for the prisons to function according to modern trends and international best practices. They also create linkages between the prisons and other UN Agencies and International NGOs for assistance and partnership. Other personnel with special professions such as Agriculture, Engineering, Legal and Prison Rehabilitation, ICT, Vocational Training and Psychiatric/General Nursing are employed to perform specific duties in their areas of specialty.
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