The United Nations and the African Union have announced the appointment of Tanzanian Lieutenant General Paul Ignace Mella as Force Commander of the joint peacekeeping force in the Sudanese region of Darfur.
Established in July 2007, the UN/AU Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) has civilian protection as its core mandate, but is also tasked with contributing to security for humanitarian assistance, monitoring and verifying implementation of agreements and assisting with an inclusive political process among other responsibilities.
Mella replaces Lieutenant General Patrick Nyamvumba of Rwanda who finished his tour of duty on March 31.
“The secretary-general would like to express his appreciation to General Nyamvumba for his dedication and invaluable service during his tenure in UNAMID,” a UN spokesperson said in a statement.
Mella has a long and distinguished career with the Tanzanian military. Most recently he served as Chief of its Defence Intelligence Organisation in Dar es Salaam. Prior to this he held a number of operational, command and staff positions, including Director of Foreign Intelligence in the Tanzania Peoples’ Defence Forces, Commanding Officer of an Infantry Battalion in the UN Mission in Liberia and Defence Adviser at the Tanzania High Commission in Uganda