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National Finance Officer at the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA)


UNOCHA is the part of the United Nations Secretariat responsible for bringing together humanitarian actors to ensure a coherent response to emergencies. OCHA also ensures there is a framework within which each actor can contribute to the overall response effort.

We are recruiting to fill the position below:

Job Title: National Finance Officer

Job ID: 11894
Location: Maiduguri
Grade: NOB
Contract Duration: 1 Year with possibility for extension

Organizational Context:

  • OCHA has recently established a Common Humanitarian Fund (CHF) in Nigeria and is recruiting the staff necessary to run the Humanitarian Financing Unit which will act, within OCHA, as the CHF’s Secretariat. Given the potential for natural disaster and the ongoing country conflict, it is of utmost importance that the current staffing gaps are filled in order to support CHF funding requirements to humanitarian operators in-country. Expectations by stakeholders of the CHF funding in terms of timelines and institutional capacity are high.
  • The NHAO is expected to help strengthen OCHA’s humanitarian financing, programmatic and reporting quality and follow-up, and support the HFU’s senior management in the same. Main duties will include supporting the correct running of the Grant Management System-based allocation and reporting timelines, sensitization and awareness-raising among NGOs and Participating United Nations Organizations of them CHF’s work, and supporting reporting and monitoring activities, or other functions as required.

Duties and Responsibilities
Under the overall guidance of the OCHA Head of Office and under the direct supervision of the Pool Fund Manager, the incumbent will be expected to be able to perform the following, prioritized according to operational requirements:

Summary of key functions:

  • Financial Review
  • Financial Management
  • Administration

Financial Review:

  • Facilitate the review and revision process of project proposals in consultation with cluster leads and other technical partners and advise organizations on recommended revisions, assisting them in revision drafting if required;
  • Support the Fund Manager in the review of grant agreements and supporting documents to ensure accuracy, consistency, reasonableness and compliance with the United Nations Financial Regulations and Rules (UNFRR) and the Country-Based Pooled Funds (CBPF) Guidelines;
  • Review project budgets to determine “normal costs and variations” in project expenditure areas to be determined;
  • Support the Fund Manager in the review of budget amendments, reprogramming or No-Cost Extension requests;
  • Conduct market cost survey for items commonly purchased under CHF projects and maintain a database to support cost effectiveness analysis of proposals to CHF;
  • Reconcile advisory reports from HQ with CHF records on project performance status and financial statements;
  • Communicate concerns about proposals, project documents, or implementing partners to the relevant HFU manager;
  • Assist in the preparation of financial analyses for the CHF Annual Reports and other progress or ad-hoc reports;
  • Support the Fund Manager in drafting budgets for services to be contracted to outside entities.

Financial Management:

  • Conduct partner sensitization on CHF procedures and guidelines for accessing grants, as well as regarding compliance with the United Nations Financial Regulations and Rules (UNFRR) and the Guidelines for Country-Based Pooled Funds (CBPF) through participation in meetings and workshops;
  • Support preparation of paperwork related to Humanitarian Coordinator project approval and disbursement actions (Fund Transfer Requests, agreements, MoU, etc.);
  • Support preparation of and execution of transfer agreements to be signed by NGO and HC, following up on requests to the HFU to arrange for fund transfers to partners and notifies payees of status of payments;
  • Assist HFU staff and CHF stakeholders regarding queries on payment and deposit-related issues;
  • Track, collect and review financial reports from CHF partners to ensure accuracy and compliance with CHF guidelines and provides feedback to partner as necessary;
  • Assist in tracking project spending and ensure that future payments are approved based on satisfactory financial reporting and justification of previous advances;
  • Support the preparation and take part in periodic financial spot-check visits to partner offices, in line with operational modalities and guidelines;
  • Participate in drafting financial spot-check monitoring reports and recommendations to partners following visits to partners;
  • Support the Fund Manager in the conduct of project audits with partners, helping facilitate audit visits, reviewing audit reports, keeping records of partner performance, providing feedback to partner and supporting the process of recovery of funds if necessary.


  • Support the Fund Manager in liaising with companies carrying out contractual services on behalf of the HFU, and provide support and information as and when required;
  • Keeps up-to-date on documents/reports/guidelines that have a bearing on matters related to program budgets and the CHF in general;
  • Act as interpreter/translator in English, Hausa and Kanori, as required.
  • Prepare documentation and reports for country-level coordination forums.
  • Perform other duties as required.

Work implies frequent interaction with the following:

  • Senior HAOs and Fund Manager
  • National and International HAOs
  • National and International NGOs
  • United Nations Agencies, Funds and Programs
  • CHF contracted entities providing capacity assessment, monitoring and audit services
  • Provincial authorities

Impact of Results:

  • Develop well-reasoned, innovative suggestions and approaches to problem resolution in dealing with complex financial/budget issues.
  • Assist in the management of funding programming projects and partners, ensuring timely delivery of outputs.
  • Help meet organizational objectives and provide sound analytical inputs and advice with respect to coordination of humanitarian financing and monitoring.


  • Ability to apply financial rules, regulations and procedures in the UN environment.
  • Ability to maintain accurate records, review and interpret a wide variety of data.
  • Ability to identify and resolve data discrepancies and operational problems.
  • Shows pride in work and in achievements; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; remains calm in stressful situations.

Proven Analytical Skills:

  • Ability to conduct independent research and analysis, identify issues, and recommend appropriate solutions.
  • Ability to relate humanitarian affairs issues and perspectives, including gender issues, to political economic, social and human rights programs.
  • Ability to work under extreme pressure, on occasion in a highly stressful environment (e.g. armed conflict, civil strife, natural disasters and human misery).

Judgment and Decision-making:

  • Apply sound judgment to resolve a range of issues/problems. Will abide by security guidelines.

Technological Awareness:

  • Solid computer skills, including proficiency in word processing, spreadsheet applications, and relevant software packages, including e-mail.


  • Proven ability to write in a clear and concise manner and to communicate effectively, including ability to prepare reports and conduct presentations, articulating options concisely, conveying maximum information, making and defending recommendations.


  • Takes ownership of all responsibilities and honors commitments; delivers outputs for which one has responsibility within prescribed time, cost and quality standards; operates in compliance with organizational regulations and rules; supports subordinates, provides oversight and takes responsibility for delegated assignments; takes personal responsibility for his/her own shortcomings and those of the work unit, where applicable.

Required Skills and Experience

  • Master’s Degree preferably in Business Management, Accounting, Economics or related field is required.


  • 2 years of relevant experience in finance and accounting/administration, crisis/emergency program management or other related area, preferably with at least two years with a UN organization or an NGO.
  • Very good analytical and writing skills are required, as is experience with project budgeting and proposal writing.
  • Experience with auditing and/or financial review of partners an advantage.

Language Requirements:

  • Professional fluency in oral and written English and Hausa and/or Kanori is required. Candidates will be tested on their linguistic ability.

Application Closing Date
13th September, 2017.

Method of Application

Interested and qualified candidates should:
Click here to apply online

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