MONUSCO – Close Protection Officer, Goma

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MONUSCO – Close Protection Officer, Goma

Job Summary:

The role of a Close Protection Officer within the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUSCO) is one of critical importance, contributing directly to the safety and security of UN personnel, particularly senior officials operating in a complex and challenging environment. This role involves a high level of responsibility, professionalism, and expertise in close protection operations. In this detailed overview, we will delve into the various aspects of this position, including its responsibilities, qualifications, competencies, and the broader context of working within a UN mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Organizational Setting and Reporting

The Close Protection Officer is part of the Security and Safety Section of MONUSCO, based in Goma. Goma is categorized as a « D » duty station, signifying a non-family duty station with specific security considerations. The Close Protection Officer reports directly to the Chief Security Officer (CSO) or an equivalent official regarding all matters related to close protection coordination. The position also maintains technical communication with the UN Department of Safety and Security, Protection Coordination Unit.


The Close Protection Officer, at the FS-6 level, carries out a range of duties and responsibilities within the mission. These duties are critical for the safety and security of UN personnel and involve:

  1. Advising the Chief Security Officer: Providing guidance and advice to the Chief Security Officer or their equivalent regarding close protection operations within the mission.
  2. Standard Operating Procedures: Developing standard operating procedures (SOPs) and security risk assessments that govern the deployment of Close Protection Units (CPUs) within the mission.
  3. Close Protection Planning: Coordinating close protection planning in strict accordance with UN close protection policy, guidance, and standard operating procedures.
  4. Security Coordination for Official Travels: Collaborating with the Chief Security Officer and host country authorities to establish protocols for security coordination concerning the official travels of senior UN officials, whether within the host country or abroad.
  5. Management of Close Protection Units: Overseeing the Close Protection Unit (CPU) in line with UN close protection guidance, ensuring its readiness and effectiveness.
  6. Information Analysis: Collecting and analyzing information relevant to tactical-level close protection operations, often in collaboration with other security units and the Chief Security Officer.
  7. Threat and Risk Assessments: Assisting in the preparation of threat and tactical risk assessment reports, which recommend specialized mitigating measures based on identified threats.
  8. Mitigation Strategies: Implementing mitigation strategies to deter or counter any identified threats, preserving the security, safety, and well-being of senior UN officials.
  9. Operational Planning: Producing and coordinating operational plans for the CPU, conducting exercises, and reviewing courses of action in alignment with assessed threats and UN close protection policies.
  10. Close Protection Operations: Carrying out close protection operations in accordance with UN policies and guidelines.
  11. Close Protection Teams: Establishing and tactically deploying close protection teams, ensuring they are well-trained to meet the assessed threat.
  12. Adherence to UN Standards: Ensuring that close protection operations are conducted in strict compliance with UN methodology and standards.
  13. Liaison with Host Country Authorities: Within delegated authority, liaising with relevant host country civilian police, military, law enforcement officials, and other stakeholders as necessary.
  14. Coordination with Other Units: Coordinating closely with other mission security, military, and police components, as well as support services.
  15. Accompanying Senior UN Officials: Accompanying senior UN officials during official travels and/or overseeing all related security requirements.
  16. Operational Reporting: Preparing regular operational reports, complete with analysis and recommendations.
  17. Authority and Responsibilities: Establishing clear lines of authority within the CPU and supervising individual team members.
  18. Risk Briefings: Providing risk briefings to senior UN officials and security managers concerning close protection matters related to official travels or daily activities.
  19. Security Coverage: Ensuring effective and efficient security coverage for the working office and personal residence of senior UN officials.
  20. Equipment and Supplies: Determining equipment, facility, and supply needs based on operational requirements.
  21. Training and Certification: Planning, coordinating, and conducting close protection training and exercises to maintain operational readiness and competencies to UN standards.
  22. Team Supervision: Supervising the performance of individual team members and establishing a rotational schedule for CPU team members.
  23. Capability Enhancement: Identifying gaps in existing capability and making recommendations for necessary enhancements.
  24. Equipment Management: Supervising the monitoring and maintenance of teams’ equipment, ensuring compliance with relevant policy.
  25. Procurement Support: Collaborating with the Chief Security Officer or equivalent in drafting Statements of Requirement and providing technical specifications for the procurement of unit and team equipment.
  26. Budget Inputs: Providing inputs related to close protection to the mission’s budget proposal.
  27. Other Duties: Performing other duties as required in line with the scope of the role.

Results Expected

The successful execution of these responsibilities ensures the effective management of the CPU and close protection operations within the mission. It also guarantees the proper implementation of SOPs in accordance with UN standards for close protection. The primary outcome is the safety and security of senior UN officials operating in a challenging and high-risk environment.


For a Close Protection Officer to excel in this role, several core competencies are essential:

  1. Professionalism: This includes an excellent knowledge of close protection techniques, combined with a solid background in military, police, or security specialization. The officer must possess well-developed analytical skills, the ability to recognize and evaluate threats, and effective coordination skills for close protection operations. Professionalism also entails the capacity to handle stress factors effectively, pride in work and achievements, professional competence, and the ability to meet commitments and deadlines.
  2. Planning & Organizing: Close Protection Officers should be adept at developing clear goals consistent with agreed strategies. They must identify priority activities, adjust priorities as necessary, allocate resources efficiently, and foresee risks while planning. The ability to monitor and adjust plans and actions based on evolving situations is crucial.
  3. Teamwork: Collaboration with colleagues is essential to achieve organizational goals. Close Protection Officers should actively seek input from team members, value others’ ideas and expertise, and place the team’s agenda ahead of personal interests. Sharing credit for team accomplishments and taking joint responsibility for any shortcomings are also important aspects of teamwork.
  4. Judgment and Decision Making: The officer should have the ability to identify key issues in complex situations related to close protection operations. This involves gathering relevant information, considering the impact of decisions on others and the organization, proposing courses of action based on available information, and making tough decisions when necessary.

Education and Job-Specific Qualifications

  • A high school diploma or equivalent is required.
  • Job-specific qualifications include UNDSS Close Protection Officer Certification, which is mandatory. Desirable certifications include UN or other Security Officer Certification and Firearms Training Officer (FTO) Certification. UNDSS Certification in the use of Emergency Trauma Bag (ETB) is also desirable.

Work Experience

  • A minimum of ten (10) years of work experience is required with a high school diploma or equivalent technical or vocational certificate. For candidates with a first-level university degree, the minimum requirement is five (5) years of progressively responsible experience.
  • Of the total work experience, at least two (2) years should be in close protection management, ideally at the level of a close protection team leader or a team leader with a national, private, or international security organization.
  • One (1) year of experience and exposure at the international level, particularly in a conflict or post-conflict environment, is mandatory.
  • An additional five (5) years of experience and exposure in convoy protection in a conflict or post-conflict environment is considered desirable.


  • English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this position, fluency in oral and written English is required.


  • Previously rostered candidates do not undergo further assessment and are not invited for such assessments.

Special Notice

  • This job opening is part of the « Recruit from Roster » process, and it is open exclusively to roster applicants who have already been placed on pre-approved rosters following a review by a United Nations Central Review Body. Rostered applicants who were placed on rosters with similar functions at the same level are eligible candidates.
  • Eligible applicants who receive an invitation to apply are encouraged to consider their interest and availability to assume the position at the specified duty station.
  • Accepting an offer to this job opening carries an expectation of accepting the position if selected. The initial appointment or assignment is for one year, subject to the availability of the post or funds, budgetary approval, or an extension of the mandate.
  • The United Nations Secretariat is actively committed to achieving gender balance in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.
  • All staff members within the United Nations are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and may be assigned to various activities or offices in accordance with established rules and procedures.

United Nations Considerations

The United Nations is deeply committed to upholding the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity among its staff members. Therefore, candidates will not be considered for employment if they have committed violations of international human rights law, international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment. The United Nations strictly prohibits such actions, and any reasonable grounds to believe that a candidate has been involved in such activities will result in disqualification.

Brief Summary

The role of a Close Protection Officer in Goma, Democratic Republic of Congo, is one that demands a high level of professionalism, expertise in close protection operations, and the ability to make critical decisions under pressure. The officer plays a vital role in ensuring the safety and security of senior UN officials operating in a complex and challenging environment. With a focus on close protection planning, risk assessment, team management, and adherence to UN standards, the Close Protection Officer contributes significantly to the overall security efforts of the United Nations in the region.

Deadline for Receiving Applications: 21 October, 2023

Click here to Apply

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