Elizabeth Maruma Mrema appointed New Executive Secretary of CMS
UNEP Executive Director, Mr. Achim Steiner has appointed Elizabeth Maruma Mrema as the new Executive Secretary of the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) Secretariat
Bonn, 9 December 2009 - UNEP Executive Director, Mr. Achim Steiner has appointed Elizabeth Maruma Mrema as the new Executive Secretary of the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) Secretariat, based in Bonn with effect from 1 December 2009.
In the four months preceding her appointment, Ms. Mrema, a national of the United Republic of Tanzania, served as Officer in Charge of the CMS Secretariat.
Ms. Mrema served for many years as a career diplomat and senior environmental lawyer at the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) with a particular focus on international environmental law, compliance and enforcement of environmental conventions as well as international environmental negotiations. In 2007, Ms. Mrema received the first-ever UNEP-wide Best Manager of the Year Award, entitled the UNEP Baobab Staff Award, for exceptional performance and dedication towards achieving the goals of UNEP.
Just before joining the CMS Secretariat, Ms. Mrema was the Principal Legal Officer and Chief of the Biodiversity and Land Law and Governance Unit in the UNEP-Division of Environmental Law and Conventions (DELC). In this capacity as well as her capacity as Senior Legal Officer and Chief of the Multilateral Environmental Agreements Support and Cooperation at UNEP-DELC from 2005 - 2007, she was also responsible for the Convention on Migratory Species and its related Agreements.
"I am very enthusiastic about taking up this position. CMS and its related Agreements will work to further enhance cooperation of biodiversity related international treaties to fully explore its potential," she said upon taking up her new post.
"Our next challenges ahead consist of concluding an instrument in February 2010 to conserve migratory sharks. Following special recommendations of the Conference of the Parties, we intend to initiate similar activities to better conserve Central African elephants, antelopes, gazelles and cheetahs in the Sahelo-Saharan region," she added.
"One of the major tasks ahead of me, which is a priority to the Parties, is the current process on the Future Shape of the CMS. I look forward to working closely with the Parties on this to ensure that the Convention moves to new heights once it is completed. The process provides an opportunity for the Parties to assess and reflect the institutional and administrative structures to implement CMS and its related instruments. The objective is to determine better mechanisms for the management of these instruments in the midst of challenging priorities to be executed with limited resources," she said.