New RAMSI Chief To Focus On Supporting Solomons Police

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Incoming coordinator has already lived in Solomons for 2 years

By Ednal Palmer

HONIARA, Solomon Islands (Solomon Star, Nov. 14, 2013) – The new special coordinator of the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands (RAMSI) admitted that she is taking over the wheel at a crucial time of the mission.

Speaking during a dinner to farewell outgoing RAMSI chief Nicholas Coppel on Tuesday night, Justine Braithwaite said she was honoured to take over the top RAMSI role as of today.

Ms Braithwaite is the first ever female to take up the post since RAMSI’s arrival in 2003.

"My family and I have lived in Solomon Islands for two years now and we are very pleased to be able to continue on.

"I will be taking over leadership of the mission at an important time for RAMSI."

She acknowledged that the mission is now centred around strengthening policing in Solomon Islands.

"My clear focus will be on supporting the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF).

"Over the past two years, I have been lucky enough to visit many RSIPF police stations around Guadalcanal and the provinces.

"I have been impressed with the professionalism and ingenuity of RSIPF officers -and their continual willingness to learn new skills, tactics and tools of the policing trade.

"I have worked closely with many members of the RSIPF in my former capacity as RAMSI Chief of Staff therefore I am confident that the excellent and collaborative relationship RAMSI currently enjoys with the RSIPF will continue into the future.

Ms Braithwaite said as the new RAMSI chief, she looks forward to partnering with the Solomon Islands Government and the broader public service.

"In particular, with the Ministry of Police, National Security and Correctional Services, as we work together to further boost policing services across the country.

Mr Coppel who was farewelled said he was happy but sad to leave.

"Happy because a lot had been accomplished during my time here but sad because I have enjoyed living here."

He applauded the Solomon Islands for the successful transition of RAMSI.

Deputy Prime Minister Manasseh Maelanga during the dinner thanked the outgoing RAMSI chief and welcomed the special coordinator.

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