By: Kingsley Omonobi – Abuja
The Federal Government has commenced machinery for the development of a ‘3rd National Action Plan’ aimed at addressing women’s peace and security issues in line with the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 which emphasized the increased participation of women in security sector institutions.
The Action Plan is expected to be finalized for subsequent implementation by April 2021.
Minister of Women Affairs, Dame Pauline Tallen made the disclosure at a Gender Training for Security Sector Institutions at the National Defence College on Tuesday even as she commended the Nigerian military under the leadership of the Chief of Defence Staff, General Lucky Irabor for the launch of the Gender Policy for the Armed Forces of Nigeria.
In this regard, the minister said, “The significance of inclusive, responsive and accountable security sector institutions and personnel particularly in the context of Nigeria, where they are engaged in multiple conflict fronts alongside regular law and order functions, cannot be overstated for the protection of women and girls”.
Noting the improvement of military – civil relations as exemplified at the First Annual Forum on Women in the Security Sector in Nigeria, convened by the federal ministry of Women Affairs in partnership with the Defence headquarters and UN Women in 2020, Dame Tallen said, “The landmark event was convened as part of Nigeria’s commemoration of the 20th anniversary. A major highlight of the event was the conferment of ‘HeforShe’ awards on those male gender champions who have supported ‘our’ work in entrenching gender in the various sectors”.
Country Representative of UN Women in Nigeria and ECOWAS, Ms. Comfort Lamptey disclosed that the idea of partnering with the National Defence College in the Gender training was based on its capacity to provide institutional capacity on building gender and security institutions, and the necessity for security personnel from across the institutional spectrum to convene, share experiences, lessons, good practice and learn collectively by practicality of gender mainstreaming within security institutions at strategic and operational levels.
“This training today, is being undertaken under the overall framework of UN Women’s project on Enhancing Gender Responsive Security Operations and Community Dialogue. It aims to support security sector operations and foster community dialogue between women affected by conflict security sector actors through three pillars of engagement”.
“Firstly, at the strategic Level, the project will seek to put in place an enabling gender sensitive policy environment. Secondly, the project will support capacity building for security personnel through development and roll out of relevant training curriculum for front-line personnel and lastly support to engagement and collaboration by affected women, and women’s organizations with security sector institutions”.
In his welcome address, Commandant of National Defence College, Rear Admiral Oladele Bamidele Daji expressed the hope that the workshop will proffer answers to the questions bordering on the place of women and men in peace and security management.
“On our part, the NDC will continue in its drive to implement training and research mandates, prioritize capacity building for both genders to participate actively in peace and security through mainstreaming gender into programmes and activities while insisting on the nomination of men and women by partner institutions”, the Commandant said.
Over 40 participants, drawn from the Armed Forces, the Police, Para-Military organizations, NAPTIP, MDAs and relevant organizations are participating in the workshop.