September 20, 2017 (ABYEI) – A Zimbabwean police officer has received this year’s International Female Police Peacekeeper Award for her service and achievements in the United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA).
- An officer from the UN peacekeeping mission in Abyei (UNISFA) on patrol in the disputed region, which is claimed by both Sudan and South Sudan (AFP)
Annah Chota, an Assistance Inspector of Police in the Southern African nation, was given at the International Women and Law Enforcement Conference in Cairns, Australia on 18 September.
The award, given annually since 2011, recognizes the outstanding accomplishments of female police officers serving the world body.
According to the UN, as head of the Gender and Children Affairs unit in the police component of UNISFA, the senior Zimbabwean police officer helped establish a women’s network in Abyei.
“Through training workshops and campaigns with local communities, Ms. Chota contributed to a shift in how communities deal with rape, domestic violence, child marriages and forced marriages, by recognising rape of a wife by a husband as an offence,” partly reads a statement extended to Sudan Tribune on Wednesday.
It added, “As a result, more women are reporting gender-based violence, and in the absence of a police service in Abyei, community protection committees can now record and recognize sexual and gender-based crimes”.
The UN Police adviser, Stefan Feller lauded Chota’s efforts to promote community-oriented policing in Abyei.
“Assistant Inspector of Police Annah Chota made a key contribution towards restoring trust of the public in the police and encouraging children, women and men in Abyei to become partners in preventing and detecting crime,” he remarked.
Currently, Zimbabwe reportedly provides 85 police officers to UN operations in South Sudan (UNMISS), Sudan (UNAMID), and Abyei (UNISFA) and Guinea Bissau (UNIOGBIS), 31% of which are women.