The UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has promised to work closely with Somali government to improve the lives of millions of children in the Horn of Africa nation.
Werner Schultink, newly-appointed UNICEF representative in Somalia, said he will play a critical role in steering the Somalia Country Office in realizing its commitment to children and their families in collaboration with the government.
“It is a great honor to be here in Somalia. I look forward to working closely with the Federal Government of Somalia in our shared mission to improve the lives of Somalia’s children,” Schultink said in a statement issued on Wednesday evening after presenting his credentials in Mogadishu to the State minister of foreign affairs and international cooperation.
“These children are the future of this country and it is imperative that we champion and uphold their child rights so that they can achieve their huge potential and also contribute back to their communities in a productive and meaningful way,” he added.
Abdulkadir Ahmed-Kheir Abd, State minister of foreign affairs and international cooperation, said he looked forward to continuing the strong collaboration with UNICEF to help improve the lives of children and women in the nation.
Schultink, a national of the Netherlands, joined UNICEF in April 1999 and has held several senior positions including most recently, the UNICEF representative in Kenya from July 2016-May 2019.
Schultink, who was also the Chief of Nutrition at Headquarters in New York, has written extensively about nutrition issues in the developing world in both academic journals and specialized books.