Client Board Meets in Entebbe

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27 Oct 2023

Client Board Meets in Entebbe

Mark Kaheru

The Regional Service Centre Entebbe (RSCE) hosted the 13th session of the Client Board meeting on 19-20 October 2023 in Entebbe which was the second meeting this year as per its regular schedule. The RSCE Client Board is made up of all Directors and Chiefs of Mission Support (D/CMS) in the Peacekeeping missions and Small Political Offices which the RSCE supports.

The RSCE Client Board is the forum where the RSCE and its client missions discuss strategic matters of mutual benefit in a bid to improve cooperation and service delivery.

The meeting chaired by Mr. Ebrima Ceesay, DMS UN Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUSCO), discussed the recent geopolitical developments and the impact on peacekeeping and RSCE. Key among these are the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) drawdown activities and the support provided by RSCE.

Also, part of the agenda was the review of 13 outstanding recommendations made during the 12th Client Board meeting in April 2023. Citing continuous collaboration between RSCE and client missions in the resolution of board recommendations, Mr. Paulin Djomo, Director of the Centre proposed the closure of 8 recommendations that have been resolved.

Mr. Djomo, Director RSCE pointed out that while two out of the 5 remaining recommendations were pending with the Centre, the other three had been escalated to UN Headquarters and the Steering Committee, the decision-making body of the RSCE headed by the Assistant Secretary-General for Support Operations, for review and advice.

The Director of the Centre acknowledged that in between meetings of the board, there is a need to provide board members with a comprehensive and consolidated mid-point review of the outstanding recommendations coming out of each meeting. The recommendation was endorsed by board members.

Mr. Djomo informed the Board the Government of Uganda and the UN signed a Memorandum of Understanding transferring the responsibility of the management of the facilities at the UN Campus at Entebbe from MONUSCO to RSCE. He clarified that the implementation of the transfer of resources at the campus will be phased allowing the RSCE to build the capacity to gradually take over logistic activities currently under MONUSCO. The first activity immediately transferred is the protocol and liaison unit which will be followed in 2024 by security services and ICT.

This will not affect service provision but rather improve the dependability and performance and will require client missions to channel their requests through Director RSCE.

Ms. Nalini Contreras the Deputy Director RSCE presented an overview of the RSCE Performance Report that showed that 32 of the 49 Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) met their target while 5 had improved in quarter 4 of FY2022/23.

Other KPI’s to note include significant improvements were seen in the Uniformed Personnel withheld amounts released within 90 days from 49% in Q1 to 93% in Q4 and Onboarding Service Line’s performance increase from 74% in Q1 to 97% in Q4 due to increased deployment of RSCE dedicated resources.

On day two, the board was led through actions taken to address challenges identified in the 2022 RSCE Client Satisfaction Survey Results, challenges faced in updating banking details in Employee Self Service (ESS) Functionality where close to 30% of the staff in client missions are still unable to properly use the functionality and management and recording of leave and attendance.

The meeting was also briefed on Audit recommendations from Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS) and Board of Auditors (BOA) to RSCE which involve Client Missions which included matters surrounding Education Grant disbursements, financial controls on paid leave and Business Planning and Consolidation (BPC) roles assigned to RSCE staff.

In Conclusion, Mr. Ceesay thanked the Board for their participation. “We have given some thought to what we have discussed, and we have included some action points that can be put into a business case that may add some impetus to our efforts. This group is very instrumental in putting thoughts together that can lead to change.”