K. Male'
11 Jan 2021 | Mon 13:19
Former United Nations Children\'s Fund (UNICEF) Resident Representative to the Maldives Dr. Munir Safieldin
Former United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) Resident Representative to the Maldives Dr. Munir Safieldin
Presidents Office
Dr. Munir Safieldin
Gratitude, warm sentiments as former UNICEF Rep. bids Maldives farewell
Safieldin said the years he worked with his Maldivian team had been the "most rewarding and enjoyable" of his 30-year career
He left the Maldives last December
Dr. Safieldin served as UNICEF representative to the Maldives since 2017

Former United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) Resident Representative to the Maldives Dr. Munir Safieldin bid a formal farewell to government dignitaries before leaving the country last month following the end of a successful tenure.

Dr. Safieldin served as UNICEF representative to the Maldives since 2017, and has since built close professional relationships with leaders of the government that reflect the strengthening of the bond between UNICEF and Maldives in recent years. A ceremony was held on 2 December 2020 at the Maldives National University (MNU) to bid farewell to Dr. Safieldin before he left the country.

Safieldin bid farewell to the Maldives in a series of tweets formal meetings, expressing his appreciation of his team at UNICEF Maldives by acknowledging that though he may not have words that are enough, the three years he worked with them had been the "most rewarding and enjoyable" of his 30-year-old career. His staff had described him as a remarkable team leader and mentor who they would miss dearly and hold close to their hearts as they bid him farewell.

President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih and First Lady Fazna Ahmed met with Dr. Safieldin for a farewell call upon completing his tenure, where First Lady Fazna assured Safieldin that she would remain steadfast in her efforts to support and advance the rights of children in the country.

Safieldin highlighted the First Lady's remarkable contributions as a UNICEF Advocate for Child Rights, and congratulated President Solih on the many initiatives undertaken by his government to strengthen child right's in the Maldives.

President Solih went on to express his gratitude to Dr. Safieldin for UNICEF's efforts to safeguard and promote awareness on the rights of children during the lockdown caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. Safieldin remarked that the Solih administration had been successful in creating a healthy environment for collaboration between the Maldives and international parties to advance children's rights in the Maldives, and said that it had been an honor to serve the country as UNICEF representative.

The Former UNICEF Representative also bid a formal farewell call to Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid in December, where the Minister Shahid had expressed his thanks to Safieldin for his immense contribution to the advancement of child rights in the Maldives, and highlighted the central role played by the former representative in strengthening the relationship between UNICEF and Maldives during his tenure.

In turn, Dr. Safieldin thanked Minister Shahid in a tweet for his strong commitment for multilateralism, and acknowledged his support and the support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in fostering effective partnership between UNICEF and the Maldives

Following his farewell call with the Minister for Gender, Family and Social Services Aishath Mohamed Didi, Dr. Safieldin thanked the Minister and her team for their collaboration, highlighting that the partnership between UNICEF Maldives and the Ministry of Gender was critical for the fulfillment of children's rights and the effective implementation of recent Acts intended to improve protection and justice for children.

In addition to this, Dr. Safieldin recognized the growing critical and strategic partnership between UNICEF Maldives and the Ministry of Education as Minister Aishath Ali thanked him for all his support to the education sector in the Maldives, especially for his assistance to ensure continuity of learning for Maldivian children in light of the Covid-19 pandemic. Most recently, UNICEF Maldives gifted the Ministry of Education with 420 laptops, 2726 Dhivehi reading books and 2903 units of disinfectants as part of their project to ensure good quality education for more than 76,000 students in public schools whose learning was impacted by the pandemic.

Before traveling from the Maldives, Dr. Safieldin met with Home Minister Imran Abdulla and senior staff at the Ministry of Home Affairs to discuss the UNICEF roadmap proposed to implement the Juvenile Justice Act, where key priorities were agreed upon before the immediate initiation of work.

While the final days of Dr. Safieldin's tenure in the Maldives was spent laying the groundwork for prolonged corporation between UNICEF and various government and non-government entities, his departure was punctuated by gratitude, well wishes and warm sentiments from those he has worked with over the course of the past three years.

Dr. Safieldin's sincerity in his efforts to empower and educate the youth of the Maldives is evident in the close relationship he maintained with volunteers at the Maldivian Red Crescent and other non-government organizations, and the personal interest he vested in collaborating with youth on critical national issues.

A national of Sudan, Dr. Safieldin served as the UN Deputy Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria prior to arrival in Maldives. He served as UNICEF Representative to the Islamic Republic of Iran between 2011-2014.

Dr. Safieldin has around 30 years of work experience with international development and humanitarian organizations as well as academia.

Last updated at: 2 years ago
Reviewed by: Aishath Shaany