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LEGAL OFFICER

Nairobi

  • Organization: UNDMSPC - Department of Management Strategy, Policy and Compliance
  • Location: Nairobi
  • Grade: Mid level - P-4, International Professional - Internationally recruited position
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Legal - Broad
  • Closing Date: Closed
Org. Setting and Reporting
This position is located in Nairobi within the Disciplinary Section of the Disciplinary Accountability Service (DS-DAS), Administrative Law Division (ALD), Office of Human Resources (OHR), Department of Management Strategy, Policy and Compliance (DMSPC). The incumbent reports to the Chief of Section. The Division is in charge of the implementation of the United Nations (UN) standards of conduct for all categories of personnel across the UN Secretariat. ALD provides strategic and legal advice on internal justice matters and represent the Secretary-General before the United Nations Dispute Tribunal. ALD handles disciplinary matters relating to Secretariat staff members, oversees and coordinates efforts and actions to prevent and respond to unsatisfactory conduct, and works to empower and support UN Secretariat managers in the exercise of their responsibilities to address conduct and discipline matters.
Responsibilities
Under the supervision of the Chief, Disciplinary Section, Disciplinary Accountability Service (DAS), the Legal Officer is responsible for the following duties: • Serves as a lead officer handling disciplinary matters from field operations and independently handles a wide range of multi-discipline and complex legal matters involving issues of international, public, national and administrative law, to include interpretation and application of instruments in that area of concentration. • Provides legal advice on diverse substantive and procedural questions of considerable complexity, which may include those related to administration and management, institutions support, procurement and contracts, peacekeeping and other operational matters, separately administered programmes and funds, criminal investigations, and prosecutions, etc. • Performs extensive legal research and analysis and prepares legal opinions, studies, briefs, reports, indictments and correspondence; provides legal advice to the division. • Prepares legal submissions/motions as necessary in the course of investigations and prosecutions. • Services diplomatic conferences, commissions, committees, task forces, expert groups, and other bodies, including preparation of background materials, summaries of issues and views of delegations, meeting reports, etc. • Reviews, advises on and drafts complex legal documents; develops new legal modalities to meet unique needs/circumstances. • Advises on and participates in negotiations and settlement of claims and disputes, or pleas of guilty, to include establishing strategy and approach, deciding on the legal text for terms and conditions of contracts, on the recommendations on the merit of claims, etc. • Provides legal advice on the interpretation and application of staff regulations and rules, including the review of administrative decisions; prepares draft amendments to the staff regulations and rules; prepares draft administrative issuances or amendments thereto and verifies their consistency with the existing staff regulation and rules; prepares analyses and evaluations of human resources policies and practices in consultation with the Human Resources Policy Section of OHR. • Represents the organization on more complex cases before arbitral and other tribunal or administrative proceedings, including disciplinary cases. • Serves on various standing boards, committees, ad hoc working groups and task forces, as required; promotes the work of the United Nations and represents the organization at meetings, conferences, seminars, etc. • Coordinates and direct teams of other legal officers dealing with significant problems as required, and/or mentors and supervises the work of junior officers on specific projects. • Contributes to review and design of new, or new applications of, legal instruments, policy, guidelines, etc. • Performs other duties as assigned.
Competencies
• Professionalism: Knowledge of international legal procedures and instruments, including criminal law, both substantive and procedural. Ability to apply legal expertise to analyzing a diverse range of complex and unusual legal issues and problems and in developing innovative and creative solutions in prosecuting complex criminal cases. Strong analytical skills and ability to conduct comprehensive legal research on a range of issues, including those of a unique and/or complex nature; proficiency in legal writing and expression and ability to prepare legal briefs, opinions, indictments or legal submissions/motions, and a variety of legal instruments and related documents. Ability to lead and cross-examine witnesses and make substantial legal arguments before Chambers of judges, or if required to take responsibility for the prosecution of criminal trials. Discretion and sound judgment in applying legal expertise to sensitive, complex legal issues. Strong negotiating skills and ability to influence others to reach agreement. Ability to work to tight deadlines and handle multiple concurrent projects/cases. Knowledge of contemporary international relations and of UN system, organization, and interrelationships. Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines, and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work. • Communication: Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed. • Planning & Organizing: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.
Education
Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in law is required. A first level university degree (Bachelor’s degree or equivalent) in combination with two additional years of relevant work experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.
Job - Specific Qualification
Not available.
Work Experience
A minimum of seven years of progressively responsible legal experience is required. Of the seven years, two years of experience in litigation at the national or international level and first-hand experience appearing and leading evidence of witnesses before a court, tribunal, or equivalent administrative boards or bodies is required. Experience in handling disciplinary matters in national or international entities is desirable. Experience with staff regulations and rules, policies, procedures and operations of the United Nations or other similar international organization is desirable.
Languages
English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this position, fluency in English is required. Knowledge of French is desirable. Knowledge of another official United Nations language is an advantage.
Assessment
Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.
Special Notice
This position is temporarily available for a period of 364 days with a possibility of extension subject to budgetary approval and availability of position. If the selected candidate is a staff member from the United Nations Secretariat, the selection will be administered as a temporary assignment. While this temporary assignment may provide the successful applicant with an opportunity to gain new work experience, the selection for this position is for a limited period and has no bearing on the future incumbency of the post. Subject to the funding source of the position, the eligibility for this temporary job opening may be limited to candidates based at the duty station. This temporary job opening may be limited to “internal candidates,” who have been recruited through a competitive examination administered according to staff rule 4.16 or staff selection process including the review of a central review body established according to staff rule 4.15. Staff members of the United Nations common system organizations who will reach the mandatory age of separation or retirement within the duration of the current temporary need period are not eligible to apply.Submitting an application or selection for the current temporary job opening does not delay or increase the mandatory age of separation. Retirees above the mandatory age of separation who wish to be considered for the current temporary job opening must indicate the reason for their last separation as "retirement." Such retirees shall not be employed by the Organization, unless (a) the operational requirements of the Organization cannot be met by staff members who are qualified and available to perform the required functions; and (b) the proposed employment would not adversely affect the career development or redeployment opportunities of other staff members and represents both a cost-effective and operationally sound solution to meet the needs of the service. At the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the recruitment and employment of staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity, with due regard to geographic diversity. All employment decisions are made on the basis of qualifications and organizational needs. The United Nations is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment of mutual respect. The United Nations recruits and employs staff regardless of gender identity, sexual orientation, race, religious, cultural and ethnic backgrounds or disabilities. Reasonable accommodation for applicants with disabilities may be provided to support participation in the recruitment process when requested and indicated in the application. The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance and geographical diversity in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position. Pursuant to section 7.11 of ST/AI/2012/2/Rev.1, candidates recruited through the young professionals programme who have not served for a minimum of two years in the position of their initial assignment are not eligible to apply to this position.
United Nations Considerations
According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of international human rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment. Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment. Reasonable accommodation may be provided to applicants with disabilities upon request, to support their participation in the recruitment process. By accepting a letter of appointment, staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General, who may assign them to any of the activities or offices of the United Nations in accordance with staff regulation 1.2 (c). Further, staff members in the Professional and higher category up to and including the D-2 level and the Field Service category are normally required to move periodically to discharge functions in different duty stations under conditions established in ST/AI/2023/3 on Mobility, as may be amended or revised. This condition of service applies to all position specific job openings and does not apply to temporary positions. Applicants are urged to carefully follow all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira, and to refer to the Applicant Guide by clicking on “Manuals” in the “Help” tile of the inspira account-holder homepage. The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application. Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.
No Fee
THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CHARGE A FEE AT ANY STAGE OF THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS (APPLICATION, INTERVIEW MEETING, PROCESSING, OR TRAINING). THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH INFORMATION ON APPLICANTS’ BANK ACCOUNTS.
This vacancy is now closed.
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