EVE Organization for Women Development in collaboration with the Global Network of Women Peace-builders – GNWP launched the localization project of the UNSCR 1325 in South Sudan. The localization will be implemented in five states in South Sudan namely Eastern Equatoria, Central Equatoria, Western Equatoria, Western Bahr El Ghazal (WBGS) and Jongolei state.
The project commenced in May 2015 with the Train the trainer (TTT) workshop in Juba with participants drawn from the five states including civil society Organizations and government officials. Two other localization consultative workshops were conducted in Yei in Central Equatoria and Torit in Eastern Equatoria state. Similar consultative workshops will be conducted in WBGS –Wau, Western Equatoria – Yambio and Jongolei state – Bor.
The Objectives of the localization of the UNSCR 1325 in South Sudan is to :
- To bring the UNSCR 1325 and relate it to the local context in the different states
- To create a pool of Local Human Resources on the UNSCR 1325 that would later support the implementation of the South Sudan UNSCR 1325 National Action Plan once launched
- To strengthen the capacity of CSOs working group on the localization of the SS-NAP and its implementation
- To effectively engage and create synergy between state CSOs working group on UNSCR 1325 and the state ministries and parliamentarians to integrate priorities identified in SS-NAP into state development plans.
- To conduct in-depth awareness on UNSCR 1325 and on the localization of the UNSCR 1325 in the five states.
In Yei, Central Equatoria state, participants included government officials from the local government and the municipality, chiefs and CSO Organizations including the ADAM group (A group of activists (men) from both CSOs and government Officials advocating for women’s rights in their communities).The Resolution was discussed using the local lens and reflecting the reality affecting women and peace and security issues in Yei River County.
Main issues affecting women in Yei River County such as sexual and gender based violence, low participation of women in decision making level at the county level; high school dropout and high illiteracy rates and women economic empowerment issues. The government representative Hon. Samuel Satimon gave a presentation on how the local government does its local development plan and discussed how the local priorities identified can be included into the local development plan. However it was evident during the discussions that the involvement of high local authorities such as the commissioner and the mayor are crucial for a realistic implementation of the UNSCR 1325 in Yei River County.
In Torit, Eastern Equatoria state; a high number of government officials turned out for the meeting including a number of parliamentarians and director generals. CSOs, journalists, police and a number of women activists. The Minister of Gender in her remarks confirmed that the UNSCR 1325 is her priority in the state. The local context was discussed at length including the possibilities on how the UNSCR 1325 South Sudan National Action Plan can be implemented in Eastern Equatoria state. Funding the implementation was also discussed on how to raise local source of funding as well as seek support from the development partners in the state. The Director General of social development and gender who is also a member of the ADAM group in Torit confirmed that, the UNSCR 1325 is included in the policy document of his ministry that will be presented to the parliament.
One of the concrete recommendations that came out of the localization in Torit was the formation of the state steering committee on the implementation of the UNSCR 1325 and the committee will comprise of different actors including government, CSOs and developmental partners and will be spearheaded by the State Ministry of Social Development and Gender. Hon. Nasike Allan expressed her thanks on behalf of the participants to both EVE Organization and GNWP for the localization workshop and said, “ this is the first time for us to have a workshop on UNSCR 1325 of this standard in Torit, and it has really touched the core issues and taken the local context into consideration”. She said that in Eastern Equatoria they are ready and committed to take this forward.
The other parliamentarians echoed the same. Rita M. Lopidia; the Executive Director of EVE Organization thanked Cordaid for funding and the State Ministry and all the participants for the hospitality and the warm welcome to Torit and for the commitment exhibited. She said that Women activists including the Women state parliamentarians need to support the implementation of the UNSCR 1325 based on the local priorities as it will strengthen and open more space and opportunities for women to participate at the different levels of the government.