KAMPALA — New UN Women Country Representative Paulina Chiwangu formally assumed duty Wednesday after presenting her credentials to Uganda’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, General Jeje Odongo.
The presentation took place at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) and was witnessed by dignitaries from MOFA and the UN Women Uganda Country Office.
During the ceremony, the minister acknowledged the tremendous work by UN Women in supporting women’s empowerment and gender equality. The new country representative was commended on her impressive experience as well as having worked extensively in Uganda.
“Women in Uganda are still faced with many challenges, including the effects of COVID-19, challenges in externalized labour in the countries in which they work, and patriarchy which still make them lag behind. We want to work with UN Women to address the prevailing challenges in refugee settings and the externalization of labour. UN Women should work closely with the government to identify priority areas that can be worked on together,” Jeje Odongo said.
Ms. Chiwangu remarked on her warm welcome to Uganda, highlighting UN Women’s mandate to support all countries to promote gender equality and women’s empowerment.
“Firstly, I congratulate Uganda and Brenda Akia for being voted onto the CEDAW committee, the first time a Ugandan has been elected to the committee. On behalf of UN Women, I pledge our close collaboration with her on CEDAW work. Further congratulations to the country on the launch of the Parish Development Model, and I commit support to ensure that it is successfully implemented,” she said.
Ms. Paulina Chiwangu holds a Doctorate in Philosophy and has over 20 years of experience in development and humanitarian work.
She has previously served as Deputy Country Representative with UN Women in South Sudan and as Deputy Country Representative for the UN Women Iraq Country Office, as well as Head of KRG Sub-Office.
Prior to her work with UN Women Iraq, she worked with UN Women Bosnia and Herzegovina as Head of Gender Coordination for the UNDAF.
She worked with UN Women in Serbia as interim Head of Office. Prior to that, she was heading the UN Inter-Agency Joint Programme on Gender Equality and she was the Acting Country Representative for UN Women office in Uganda for one year.
Before joining UN Women, she was the Head of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation, as well as the Public Relations Unit for UNDP’s Police Reform Programme in Dhaka, Bangladesh. She has held positions in various Southern African countries as well as in the United States and Ireland.
The UN Women Country Representative is an accredited representative of the UN Women Executive Director and the Regional Director and is responsible for negotiations with the host country.
The Country Representative also oversees relationships and activities with the government and other partners, provides security for UN Women personnel and facilitates functional common services arrangements with other UN agencies.