Job Opening

Posting Title: Head of Programme - Countering Transnational Organized Crime, Illicit Trafficking and Illicit Drug Trafficking, P4
Department/Office: United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
Duty Station: NAIROBI
Posting Period: 27 April 2023 - 26 May 2023
Job Opening Number: 23-Drug Control and Crime Prevent-UNODC-207307-R-Nairobi (E)
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Org. Setting and Reporting

The position is located in the Regional Office for Eastern Africa (ROEA) of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) in Nairobi, Kenya. Within the framework of the Regional Programme entitled: “Promoting the Rule of Law and Human Security in Eastern Africa”, the incumbent will work under the direct supervision of the UNODC Regional Representative, Regional Office for Eastern Africa (ROEA).

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The incumbent will coordinate the implementation of the Programme on “Countering Transnational Organized Crime, Illicit Trafficking and Illicit Drug Trafficking”, which is aimed at enhancing the capacity of Member States in the region to respond effectively to transnational organized crime. This entails the provision of ongoing policy advice and technical guidance to Governments and regional authorities in the field of preventing and countering organized crime, including illicit trafficking of drugs, firearms and natural resources, trafficking in persons, smuggling of migrants, as well as border management, border security and support to reform processes to improve the investigation, prosecution and adjudication of related offences. Within delegated authority, the Programme Management Officer (Head of Programme - Countering Transnational Organized Crime, Illicit Trafficking and Illicit Drug Trafficking) will be responsible for the following duties:

• Coordinate the development, implementation and evaluation of the Programme on “Countering Transnational Organized Crime, Illicit Trafficking and Illicit Drug Trafficking” of the Regional Programme.
• Develop and formulate relevant programmes on preventing and countering illicit drug trafficking, trafficking in persons, smuggling of migrants, trafficking of firearms and natural resources, and other organized crime, including border management and border security.
• Supervise and coordinate the work of the Programme staff to ensure effective implementation and management of the projects that fall under the Programme; ensure synergy with other programmes in ROEA, contribute and ensure coordination among the relevant personnel and units at ROEA and UNODC Headquarters (HQ) in particular with regard to the administrative set up of the activities, recruitment of staff and consultants, subcontracting of services and financial monitoring and reporting.
• Ensure regular communication with all stakeholders, and ensure that reporting obligations and other obligations towards the donors and other stakeholders are fulfilled in a timely manner.
• Monitor national and regional situations and support the development of improved evidence-based knowledge on the status and characteristics of organized crime, illicit drug trafficking, migrant smuggling, trafficking in persons, natural resources, border management, border security and other areas by providing analysis on major trends and modus operandi of transnational criminal networks throughout the region.
• Prepare and draft a variety of written outputs, such as background papers, progress reports, evaluation reports, mission reports, briefings and presentations.
• Conduct assessments of ongoing law enforcement measures and national and regional capabilities and suggest strategies and actions for their improvement, including measures to prevent and counter the infiltration of transnational criminal networks in Eastern Africa.
• Provide policy advice and technical guidance to Governments and regional authorities in the field of preventing and countering organized crime and illicit trafficking (of drugs, trafficking in persons, smuggling of migrants, firearms and natural resources, border management, border security). Maintain contact on law enforcement issues with international bodies and organizations and work closely with liaison officers and donor representatives in charge of law enforcement matters in Africa. Actively pursue the identification of funding possibilities for the above-described UNODC programme areas in Eastern Africa.
• Represent UNODC in major meetings and conferences in the region related to transnational organized crime issues.
• Collect and analyze data to identify trends or patterns and provide insights through graphs, charts, tables and reports using data visualization methods to enable data-driven planning, decision-making, presentation and reporting.

• Perform other work-related duties as required.


• Professionalism: Demonstrates knowledge and understanding of theories, concepts and approaches relevant to crime, organized crime, drug trafficking, trafficking in persons and smuggling of migrants, money laundering, security sector reform, victim assistance and witness protection, as well as UNODC mandates. Has good knowledge of major international challenges, policies and practices related to the prevention and countering of illicit drug trafficking, organized crime, money laundering, terrorism, migrant smuggling, trafficking in persons. Demonstrates good research, analytical and problem-solving skills, including ability to identify and contribute to the solution of problems/issues. Has ability to analyze and interpret data in support of decision-making and convey resulting information to management. Has excellent drafting and communications skills. Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of the subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.

• Planning& Organizing: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.

• Creativity: Actively seeks to improve programmes or services; offers new and different options to solve problems or meet client needs; promotes and persuades others to consider new ideas; takes calculated risks on new and unusual ideas; thinks “outside the box”; takes an interest in new ideas and new ways of doing things; is not bound by current thinking or traditional approaches.

• Judgement/Decision-making: Identifies the key issues in a complex situation, and comes to the heart of the problem quickly; gathers relevant information before making a decision; considers positive and negative impacts of decisions prior to making them; takes decisions with an eye to the impact on others and on the Organization; proposes a course of action or makes a recommendation based on all available information; checks assumptions against facts; determines the actions proposed will satisfy the expressed and underlying needs for the decision; makes tough decisions when necessary.


An advanced university degree (Master’s or equivalent) in law, management, political or social science, international relations or related fields of criminal justice, crime prevention and law enforcement, is required. A first-level university degree in similar fields in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

A minimum of seven years of professional, progressively responsible experience in law enforcement, police reform, security sector, crime prevention and criminal justice matters is required.

Work experience in working to combat trafficking in persons and smuggling of migrants is required

Work experience in technical cooperation programme planning and management is required

Work experience in a criminal justice system and/or law enforcement at senior level is desirable.

Work experience in a field environment Africa is desirable

Experience in data analytics or related area is desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this position, fluency in English is required. Working knowledge of French is desirable. Knowledge of another United Nations official language is an advantage.


Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise and a competency-based interview.

Special Notice

This is a project post. Filling of this position is subject to funding availability and the initial appointment will be for a period of one year. Extension of the appointment will be subject to extension of the mandate and/or the availability of the funds.

Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and to assignment by him or her. In this context, all staff are expected to move periodically to new functions in their careers in accordance with established rules and procedures.

At the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the recruitment and employment of staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity, with due regard to geographic diversity. All employment decisions are made on the basis of qualifications and organizational needs. The United Nations is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment of mutual respect. The United Nations recruits and employs staff regardless of gender identity, sexual orientation, race, religious, cultural and ethnic backgrounds or disabilities. Reasonable accommodation for applicants with disabilities may be provided to support participation in the recruitment process when requested and indicated in the application.

The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance and geographical diversity in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.

Nairobi is classified in the B category (family duty station).

United Nations Considerations

According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of international human rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.

Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

Reasonable accommodation may be provided to applicants with disabilities upon request, to support their participation in the recruitment process.

The paramount consideration in the appointment, transfer, or promotion of staff shall be the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. By accepting an offer of appointment, United Nations staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and assignment by him or her to any activities or offices of the United Nations in accordance with staff regulation 1.2 (c). In this context, all internationally recruited staff members shall be required to move periodically to discharge new functions within or across duty stations under conditions established by the Secretary-General.

Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the Manual for the Applicant, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.

The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.

No Fee


Sorry, this job opening is no longer available.
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