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UNICs in Africa, Turkey converge in Beirut to train on UMOJA

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03 July 2018
UNICs in Africa, Turkey converge in Beirut to train on UMOJA
The Department of Public Information (DPI) organized an UMOJA training workshop for UNICs in Africa and Turkey with the support of the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) and the UN Information Centre (UNIC) in Beirut.

The 5-day training was hosted at ESCWA, whose staff also provided training on some of the sessions, which included hands-on on financial and human resources management, voluntary contributions, property management, travel, low value acquisitions among many other features on UMOJA. The training aimed at providing DPI field staff with the skills needed to optimize resources.

From 25 to 29 June, Administrative Assistants from UNIC Ankara and UNICs in Khartoum, Dar es Salaam, Windhoek, Lagos, Accra, Ouagadougou, Cairo, Tunis, Lome, Zambia, Bujumbura, Pretoria, Dakar and Yaoundé came together in Beirut to learn about the gradual implementation of UMOJA in their respective offices and to share expertise and consolidate communication and future collaboration.

“It’s a unique opportunity for them and us to be in the field, to meet in person. It’s not only about Umoja, it’s about rules and regulations of the organization: Teamwork, networking, establishing relationships, that’s the main takeaway from this experience that will benefit us as we go forward,” said Fernando Dobrusky, the trainer from DPI.

A key output of the workshop was to create a new business model for UNICs to align financial regulations and transactions by delegating the management of processes to UNIC offices in the field with support from HQ within the established accountability framework.

“The training is good for us as admin assistants and those working with financial regulations, concerning our new tasks and roles in Umoja. It will help us get it right,” said Adeola Margaret Adedeji from UNIC Lagos.

Turkan Coskun from UNIC Ankara said this training had been one of the best experiences for her as a UN staff member because it represented a wonderful opportunity to travel to Beirut and make new acquaintances. “Since we heard about Umoja and that UNICs will be part of it, we’ve been excited to be part of this training, to meet all those people facing the same challenges all around the world. We are building a network where we can ask questions and help each other,” she added.

For Nihal Elkady from UNIC Cairo, the training represented a good opportunity to upgrade her qualifications and get to know the new system, in addition to meeting “my colleagues from UNICs in other duty stations”. Elkady thanked UNIC Beirut for the warm hospitality and assistance in the logistics.

All those UNICs went live on July 1.