By Stephen Wandera
MUNYONYO – A group of women gender experts have convened at Speke Resort Munyonyo to strategize for more political slots to promote women participation in governance, peace building and conflict resolution. According to Martin Nisiima, the UN Women, communications officer, the meeting of over 30 participants with vast experience and expertise on women, peace and security comprise of national and regional actors.
“On the theme; advancing gender equality in post conflict and fragile states regional convening in Uganda from May 6-10, 2019 is focus on case studies of post conflict and fragile states; Burundi, South Sudan, Sudan and Somalia. The convening is identifying lessons learned, consider good practices and consider innovative solutions to promoting women participation in peace building and conflict resolution. It will also assist in initiating a peace process among women themselves albeit across different political affiliations,” he said.
Mr Nisiima further explained, “We are recognizing areas of mutual collaborations and partnerships necessary to promote gender equality and women empowerment in conflict and fragile states.
The purpose of the convening is to share experiences in peace building, challenges and opportunities aimed at increasing the number of women in decision making and empowerment.”
He said they aim at promoting and strengthening women’s meaningful engagement and effective participation in political and governance.
“We want to explore the opportunities for advancing gender equality and women empowerment in the context of implementing commitments made in peace agreements (South Sudan and Somalia) by illuminating experiences and lessons learned (Uganda). In particular implement legislative and constitutional reforms and other innovative approaches,” Nisiima noted.
The meeting comes after over the past two decades, a number of countries in the East and Horn of Africa region have experienced violent conflict and political instability mostly affecting children and women. In the three focus countries, economic development, democracy and the rule of law have suffered reversals. Often compounding the consequences of conflict and post conflict recovery are denial of civil and political rights, failures in governance and push back on women’s rights and gender equality. Serious violations of human rights particularly against the most vulnerable in society continue to occur with worrying regularity.