Women's History Month

This month’s newsletter is dedicated to the women of law enforcement in recognition of their hard work and dedicated support in ensuring the safety and security in our societies. The RTC would particularly like to highlight a few female officers from the region who have served as mentors to many women in policing and exhibited great potential for change and improvement in the communities they serve. Let’s hear them as they share their law enforcement experience with the RTC community.

Alumna from Sierra Leone

My name is Fofanah-Sesay. I am the Principal Compliance Officer/In-house Counsel for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, in Sierra Leone. My duties encompass ensuring that the state complies with Human Rights obligations as stipulated by international standards.  I also compliment the Office of the Attorney General and Minister of Justice in providing legal advice on any matter pertaining to the Ministry in its interaction with foreign states, international organizations, non-governmental organizations, other government ministries, departments and agencies.

I am passionate about Human Rights and the girl’s empowerment. I am a member of Legal Access through Women Yearning for Equality Rights and Social Justice (L.A.W.Y.E.R.), an organization comprised of all female Legal Practitioners in Sierra Leone. I joined PowerWomen232, which is a network of Sierra Leonean women focused on empowering other women. In 2013, I became the co-founder of Jewels for Jesus Charity organization.

I was nominated and won Best Professional in the field of law by NEXTE Awards in 2016 and was nominated for Female Legal Practitioner of the year 2017 by Sister’s Choice Awards.

In February 2018, I became an Alumni of International Law Enforcement Academy (ILEA /RTC) as a delegate from Sierra Leone and benefitted from a plethora of knowledge on how to identify indicators of human trafficking and human smuggling operations; how to identify victims of human trafficking; and best practices in planning an investigative operation. Overall, the training was engaging, an eye-opener, beneficial and insightful. Most importantly, I discovered how some issues on my desk could fit in the description of a possible Human Trafficking case for immediate investigation.

Alumna from Cote D’Ivoire

My name is Boukei Kehi and I am a Police Commissioner with National Police of Côte d'Ivoire. Over the years, I have gained professional skills at National Police in Côte d'Ivoire and the United Nations where I served in various capacities. Within the National Police, I served as Superintendent in the Abidjan district, member of the Working Group on the Reform of the Security Sector (RSS). At the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH), I served as IDP Camps Administrator Officer, Training Management Officer for Gender-based Violence, Investigations and Training Coordinator, and as a Sexual Abuse and Exploitation Focal Point. I served as the UNPOL Regional Commander of the Northern Region of Haiti.

I am a women's and children's rights activist in the fight against gender-based violence. Currently, I am in charge of gender-related training deliveries at the Ministry of the Interior and Public Security in Côte d'Ivoire. I am also in charge of coordinating all activities of the “Gender Desks” in the entire police department in Cote d’Ivoire.

In December 2017, I was privileged to have participated in a training facilitated by the RTC on the subject of "Leadership for Women in Law Enforcement". The training was very rewarding as it helped develop my leadership skills. The practical techniques acquired during the training session equipped me to be more efficient and effective. I learned how to overcome the barriers that hindered my progress in my law enforcement career. Indeed, this course on “Leadership for Women in Law Enforcement” has made me a better leader. I am now able to relate better with anybody that I come into contact with and also bring out the best in that person, be it my subordinates or my superiors.

Following the end of the course, my first successful action was to convince my superiors to allow me to organize a training session for all new female recruits of the National Police on February 23, 2018. The aim of the session was to coach them and make them know their rights and duties; to protect them from abuse, to instill in them a sense of professional conscience and integrity, and to make them aware of their role and their strengths as women in law enforcement.

Alumna from Togo

My name is Togbenou and I am a police officer currently serving at the Immigration Service and stationed at the Aflao border. I have been in the service for 11 years. Between 2008 and 2015, I worked as a judicial police officer in various police stations. During this period, I worked on several cases related to violence against women and girls.

In December 2017, I attended a course at the RTC on “Leadership for women in Law Enforcement”. The training has equipped me with the requisite skills on how to manage my subordinates and how to work in close collaboration with my superiors. As a leader, I also understood the importance of developing action plans and objectives and how to achieve them. I acquired the necessary skills needed to identify the strength and weakness of my subordinates and how to manage them.

Alumna from Nigeria

I am Miss William-Ebi, an Assistant Superintendent of Nigeria Customs Service. I participated in the Leadership for Women in Law Enforcement Course in December 2017.

The course has proven to have been a highly beneficial one as it has helped me understand behavioral styles in my workplace and better manage my emotions. I have learned to be a role model to others, inspire a shared vision and challenge the process by going beyond the usual. By this I have been able to enable others in my space to act irrespective of my presence. I now have a better balance between family and work life.

I'm very grateful to have had the opportunity to partake in the course. I thank the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs for sponsoring the course and West Africa Regional Training Center for hosting us. Thank you!