18 April 2011

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Biographical Note

Secretary-General Appoints Mbaranga Gasarabwe of Rwanda


Assistant Secretary-General for Safety and Security


United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has appointed Mbaranga Gasarabwe of Rwanda as the first Assistant Secretary-General for Safety and Security, following the General Assembly’s endorsement of his proposal to reclassify the post at that level.

As deputy to the Under-Secretary-General for Safety and Security, the Assistant Secretary-General will be responsible for the day-to-day overall management of the Department, for strengthening internal management as well as representing the Department in the absence of the Under-Secretary-General.

Ms. Gasarabwe, currently Resident Coordinator/UNDP Resident Representative and Designated Official in Mali, has served as Resident Coordinator in Guinea and Djibouti, and as Resident Representative ad interim and Deputy Resident Representative in Benin since 1998.  Beginning in 1991, she held various positions with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in New York, including Chief of Division ad interim for Eastern and Central Africa, having previously worked in other international institutions.

She brings to the Department of Safety and Security her extensive experience as Designated Official within the United Nations Security Management System, including the coordination of both humanitarian and security actions during crisis situations.  Ms. Gasarabwe’s demonstrated capacity in mobilizing resources for humanitarian and development activities, as well as her ability to forge collaborative partnerships at the senior-most levels, is notable.  Her diligent efforts over the years to promote the gender dimension in all aspects of her work, particularly at the field level, will be an asset to the Department.

In her current position, Ms. Gasarabwe has worked in close collaboration with the Department of Safety and Security to address security issues and ensure regular security-situation analysis.  She has been instrumental in leading the United Nations country team in supporting the Organization’s “Delivering as One” initiative in Mali.  As Resident Coordinator in Djibouti, she successfully mobilized development partners to advance the humanitarian management of an influx of approximately 22,000 refugees.  In Guinea, Ms. Gasarabwe successfully faced the challenges of taking on four functions — Resident Coordinator, Humanitarian Coordinator, Designated Official and UNDP Resident Representative — at a time and in an environment fraught with conflicts.

Born in Rwanda in 1959, Ms. Gasarabwe holds a master’s degree in economics from the University of Burundi, as well as a master’s degree in management and business administration from the Arthur D. Little School of Management, now known as the Hult International Business School, in Boston, Massachusetts in the United States.

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For information media • not an official record