Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of UNMIL
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on 12 August 2015 announced the appointment of Farid Zarif of Afghanistan as his Special Representative for Liberia and Head of the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL).
Deputy Special Representative for Political and Rule of Law
Yacoub El Hillo
Deputy Special Representative for Peace Consolidation
Resident Coordinator and Resident Representative
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today announced the appointment of Yacoub El Hillo of Sudan as his Deputy Special Representative in the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL). He will also serve as the United Nations Resident Coordinator and Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
Mr. El Hillo succeeds Antonio Vigilante of Italy, who concluded his assignment on 15 June 2016, and to whom the Secretary-General is grateful for his outstanding contribution and dedicated service in supporting the implementation of the mandate of UNMIL and coordinating the activities of the United Nations system in Liberia.
Mr. El Hillo brings to the position a wealth of experience in the field and at United Nations Headquarters. Since August 2013, he has served as the United Nations Resident Coordinator, Humanitarian Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in the Syrian Arab Republic, based in Damascus.
Prior to his assignment in Syria, he served as the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Director for the Middle East and North Africa in Geneva, a position he held since November 2010. He was the UNHCR Regional Representative to the Gulf Cooperation Council Countries based in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (2009-2010); UNHCR Representative in Tanzania (2006-2009); Deputy Reconstruction and Humanitarian Coordinator, United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) in Baghdad (2005-2006); UNHCR Chief of Mission in Iraq (2003-2005); and he was the Chef de Cabinet of the High Commissioner’s Office at UNHCR Headquarters (2001-2002).
Major-General Salihu Zaway Uba
Major General Uba brings to this position 32 years of national and international military service. Prior to his appointment by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to serve as the Force Commander for the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL), Major General Uba served as the Commander of Training and Doctrine Command of the Nigerian Army and the Commandant of the Nigerian Army Peacekeeping Center from 2013 to 2014. Between 2012 and 2013, he served as the Director of the Veterans’ Affairs Department in the Nigerian Ministry of Defence.
Ms. Bibi Eng
Chief of Staff
Ms. Eng was appointed as UNMIL Chief of Staff in October 2016 after serving as Deputy Chief/Senior Political Affairs Officer with UNMIL Political Affairs Service from June 2016.
She is a senior UN manager with 20 years of political and legal experience including in Eastern Europe and over a decade in Africa. She has significant experience in management and working with high-profile international officials, and expertise in analyzing political contexts, negotiating conflicts, developing policy, mainstreaming cross-cutting issues, and practicing law relating to intergovernmental organizations.
Prior to joining UNMIL, she has served as Deputy Chief of Staff/Senior Political Affairs Officer in Kosovo with UNMIK; as Senior Legal Officer with United Nations Environment Programme in Nairobi; in legal and political capacities in the United Nations Mission in Sudan; and as Legal Officer with Opération des Nations Unies au Burundi and the United Nations Secretariat, New York.
Ms. Eng has a Juris Doctor from Brooklyn Law School, New York, and holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore.
Mr. Blatchly is a serving senior Police Officer from the United Kingdom. He succeeded Mr. Gregory Hinds as the Police Commissioner in December 2016.
Before his appointment to UNMIL, Mr. Blatchly was the Chief of Mission Management and Support Section for Police Division within the United Nations Secretariat in New York, providing strategic advice and support to the Police components in UN Peacekeeping Missions. In 2014, he was the Senior Police Adviser to the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), a role in which he served as the international security adviser to the Iraqi High Election security Committee for the Presidential elections.
Prior to secondment to the United Nations, Mr. Blatchly held a number of diverse senior roles in the UK, including responsibility for major and organized crime investigation, counter terrorism and intelligence functions, and as Firearms and Public Order Commander .
Mr. Blatchly holds a Master’s Degree in Criminal Justice from Leicester University and a Bachelor’s degree in Policing.
David John Penklis
Director Mission Support
The United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon appointed David John Penklis of Australia as the Director Mission Support on 6 July 2016.
Dr. Penklis has served with the United Nations since 1994, working at the United Nations Secretariat in New York and in Vienna, and in peacekeeping operations in Africa and Eastern Europe. He brings significant expertise in the management of mission support, the start-up, the transition and the liquidation of United Nations peacekeeping operations. He has experience in implementing service optimization and improvement programmes for new and established organisations.
Dr. Penklis holds a bachelor’s degree in business, postgraduate degrees in commerce and international relations and a Doctor of Philosophy Degree from The University of Sydney.
Closure of UNMIL
The United Nations Mission in Liberia successfully completed its mandate on 30 March 2018. You can find out about the mission's past activities and achievements through this website. The United Nations family remains committed to supporting the Government, ensuring that the hard won peace is sustained and that the country and its people continue to progress and thrive.