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).
He also served in a number of other assignments since joining the United Nations in 1989, in his native Sudan (1989-1991), Kenya (1991-1993), Somalia (1993-1994), Tanzania (1994-1996), Liberia (1996-1999), Geneva (1999-2002) and at the United Nations Headquarters in New York (2002-2003).
Mr. El Hillo graduated with a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) from the University of Khartoum, Sudan, in 1986.
Born in 1963, he is married and has five children.
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.
Major General Uba has also held a number of high-level positions within United Nations Peacekeeping Operations. He previously served UNMIL as Sector Commander from 2010 to 2012, and as Company Commander in the United Nations Protection Force (UNPROFOR) from 1992 to 1993.
Major General Uba has master’s degrees in strategic studies, business administration, and peace and conflict from the University of Ibadan, Imo State University, and the National Open University, respectively, in Nigeria. He is also a graduate of the War College, Nigeria.
Born in 1959, he is married and has three children.
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.