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Head Guinea-Bissau Peacebuilding Office Announced

Annan Selects Nigerian To Serve As Head Of UN Peacebuilding Office In Guinea-Bissau

Secretary-General Kofi Annan announced today that he plans to appoint Nigeria’s Shola Omoregie as his new representative in Guinea-Bissau and as head of the United Nations Peacebuilding Support Office to the West African country (UNOGBIS).

Mr. Omoregie, 59, a veteran UN official, replaces Joao Bernardo Honwana of Mozambique, who left the post in mid-September to return to UN Headquarters.

The Nigerian has worked with the UN since 1978 in a variety of posts and was most recently Chief of the Security Council Practices and Charter Research Branch in the Department of Political Affairs’ Security Council Affairs Division.

His appointment comes as Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs Tuliameni Kalomoh briefed the Security Council today on Mr. Annan’s latest report on the work of UNOGBIS.

In that report, Mr. Annan said that while Guinea-Bissau has made some progress towards political reconciliation, it remains so poor and has so many enduring tensions that the risk of a major setback is ever-present.

The socio-economic situation is also dire, with a sharp drop in revenue from the staple cashew nut crop, a poor rice harvest this season and the problem of salary arrears in the public sector combining to exacerbate social tensions.

The Secretary-General said he plans to revise slightly the mandate of UNOGBIS, which has been operation since 1999 to help Guinea-Bissau recover from a bitter civil war, and extend it until the end of next year.


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