UN Advocates for women representation in building security sector

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The UN Women has posited that ensuring women’s meaningful representation in the security sector is critical to building an inclusive, responsive, and accountable security sec­tor that reflects the diversity of the community it serves and better responds to their needs.

UN Women Representative to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Ms. Beatrice Eyong stated this at the launch of Enhancing Gender-Responsive Security Operations and Community Dialogue Project in Nigeria (Phase II) and Public Validation of Police Gender Policy.

She said it was important to advance gender balance in security sector, which the program stands to achieve

“The Enhancing Gender-Responsive Security Operations and Community Dialogue Project in Nigeria (Phase II)”: is a strategic initiative with an overall objectives of building capacity for gender-responsive security sector policy reforms in target security sector institutions and strengthening collaborative engagements between women affected by conflict and community-based structures with security agencies and legislators to address security concerns of women and girls in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states, and broadly Nigeria. The Project is a two-year initiative (2023-2024) designed to consolidate on the successes recorded under Phase I, with support from the Government of Germany. UN Women and partners are counting on your support to achieve the set goals and objectives of the Enhancing Gender-Responsive Security Operations and Community Dialogue Project in Nigeria.”

Read Also: UN Women partner with traditional, religious leaders to eliminate GBV

According to Ms. Eyong, with the collective efforts by UN Women and partners, remarkable achievements were recorded by the project.

Key security sector institutions have put in place an enabling, gender-responsive policy environment, Inter-agency coordination for gender-responsiveness among security institutions, MDAs and civil society organizations was strengthened; The Security concerns of women and girls in Borno and Yobe states were addressed through the establishment of functional Mixed Observers Teams (MOTs) and Community Safety Platforms (CSPs), with support from PWAN and UN Women. In addition, a Standard Training Manual on Gender for security sector institutions, as well as a Training Manual and Standard Operational Guidelines on Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV) for the Nigeria Police Force was developed,” she said.

The Permanent Secretary, Nigeria Ministry of Women Affairs, Mrs. Monilola Udoh, stressed that women’s inherent potentials to negotiate, mediate and construct lasting peace are adequately entrenched in peace processes at all levels towards the realization of a safe society for all.

“While I am very positive about the level of impact this project will make in realizing a gender-responsive security sector, I wish to use this opportunity to implore all the implementing partners and key stakeholders to put in every needed effort towards realizing desired outcomes of the project as well as establishing a workable strategy towards its sustainability,” she stressed  

Also speaking, the Police Force Gender Adviser, AIG Aishatu Baju, explained that “the police is highly committed to ensuring that there is gender responsiveness in the Nigerian police. The Police Gender Policy is the first institution in Nigeria to develop a gender policy in 2010 that is to show how committed the Nigerian police is in mainstreaming gender in the force. The policy looks at equal opportunity for all the members of the police force irrespective of the gender and how to respond to GBV.’’ she explained.

The objective of the launch is to increase support and visibility for enhancing gender-responsive security operations and community dialogue in Nigeria by stakeholders, including validation of the 2nd Gender Policy of the Nigeria Police Force.

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