The Women’s Leadership for Peace and Security in the Greater Horn of Africa Project was launched in 2009. The project seeks to maximize the participation and contribution of women in national and regional peace building processes. Forty women from the Greater Horn of Africa, who are leaders in their respective civil society organizations, are the backbone of the project (G40). They are from Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Somaliland, South Central, Puntland, Sudan, South Sudan and Uganda and have worked together in 9 missions across the Horn of Africa. In the G40 High Level Mission in Hargeisa, on ¨Women Building Peace”, held from the 10th to 14th February 2012, the women noted the importance of women´s participation in the upcoming London Conference.
Women of Somaliland, Puntland and South Central have voiced their concern about the lack of women’s inclusion in decision-making structures and processes in Somalia. Neither the TFG, nor the Somaliland Governing Structure have fulfilled the stipulated quotas for women´s representation. The Implementation of the Roadmap for Somalia should not be another missed opportunity for advancing gender equality in the region. The London Conference presents a unique opportunity to ensure that gender is mainstreamed into the seven thematic areas of the Roadmap and that the participation of women, and their interests, in peace and security is effected.
The G40 women, in support of the women of South Central, Somaliland and Puntland, recommend the following:
- That peace, security and democracy be made a priority for Somalia
- That the security needs of women, particularly in South Central, be prioritized
- That gender equality be encoded as a principal for building a democracy
- That agreed upon quotas for women´s participation in decision-making structures and peace and security processes be observed and monitored.
- That UNSCR on Gender Peace and Security (1325, 1820, 1880, and 1888, 1960) be considered in the implementation of the Roadmap to ensure: (a) the prevention of gender based violence (b) the participation of women in peace and security structures and processes, and (c) the protection of women during conflict and post-conflict situations.
- Apply gender sensitive budgeting in the allocation of resources for the implementation of the Roadmap
- Popularize the implementation of the Roadmap to ensure a participatory approach
- Enhance and utilize women´s skills in facilitation, communication, leadership and conflict resolution in order to produce sustained and meaningful peace and security in the Greater Horn of Africa.
We trust that the representatives at this London Somalia Conference will reflect positively on these recommendations from the G40 Women´s Alliance in the Greater Horn of Africa. Furthermore, that the respective governments will honour their commitments on realizing gender equality and the improvement of the lives of women in Somalia.
We wish you fruitful and successful deliberations.