Women’s International Peace Centre and the Uganda Women’s Network (UWONET) with support from The Embassy of Ireland are partnering in an 8-month project “Women at the Centre of Sustaining Peace in Uganda” to promote the implementation of Uganda’s National Action Plan III (2021 – 2025) on Women, Peace and Security (WPS) at the national level and in Karamoja, particularly Kotido and Moroto districts from January to August 2022.
These districts have been selected due to the heightened tension related to cattle rustling. The project will directly address the gap of low awareness and uptake of the NAP III, which provides a clear operational framework for government and non-government actors at national and district levels to not only address the impact of conflict on women but also promote women’s meaningful participation in conflict resolution, peacebuilding and security processes. The project will centre women’s critical role and also focus on strengthening partnership among civil society actors, and between civil society and government, and stakeholders to collaboratively advance the WPS agenda and NAP III implementation.
This builds on the success of previous collaborations with the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development in drafting and ongoing coordination of NAP implementation, with the Ministry of Internal Affairs in operationalizing the National Steering Committee and the District Peace Committees of the Conflict Early Warning and Early Response Unit (CEWERU), with the Office of the Prime Minister through the National Peace Platform on the National Peace Building and Conflict Transformation policy, with District Local Governments, National Women’s Council and local women’s rights organisations on WPS issues. The project also benefits from lessons learned through the Women’s Situation Room Uganda, which used women peace champions to advocate for peace with high-level political and technical leaders at the national level following the 2016 and 2021 elections. Similarly, lessons from previous work and the strong reputation of women peace mediators engaged in conflict resolution and peacebuilding are considered in the proposed actions at the sub-regional level.
This will target 20 national women peace champions (reputable influential women from diverse sectors and regions) and 100 women peace mediators (diverse women leaders and peacebuilders) in Karamoja to lead the awareness campaign on NAP III and the targeted influencing of local and national level actors. The project will also work with the Office of the Prime Minister, Ministry of Internal Affairs and Gender Committee of Parliament to raise the profile of the status of the national peace policy and advocate for its presentation for approval. The project will partner with the National Technical Committee to target representatives of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) with key roles in NAP III design and implementation for reflection on progress, challenges and opportunities to advance NAP III implementation. These include Ministries of Defence and Veteran Affairs, Internal Affairs, Finance, Health, Foreign Affairs and Local Government, and the Office of the Prime Minister including the office of the Minister of Karamoja Affairs, departments of the Uganda Police Force, and the Equal Opportunities Commission.
The project will apply the following approaches;
- Inception meetings at the sub-regional and national level with government partners and women’s groups to ensure buy-in, a collaborative approach to implementation, and design of the awareness and advocacy campaign
- A baseline assessment to appreciate the current situation, map key actors and opportunities for influencing NAP implementation in project districts and at the national level
- Multimedia campaign to popularise NAP III and women’s peacebuilding roles. This includes printed simplified NAP III materials, radio and tv talk shows, spots and video messages, and social media campaigns.
- National Women Peace Champions and district Women Peace Mediators identified and trained to lead public awareness and visibility of NAP III and influence efforts with local and national actors
- National Influencing meetings targeting key ministries, departments and agencies, to raise awareness and promote uptake of specific actions that advance NAP III implementation.
- Reflection workshops with MDAs and CSOs on NAP III progress, gaps and opportunities to accelerate the implementation of the WPS agenda over the next 5 years. This will be followed by Co-creation workshops with CSOs to explore a potential WPS consortium and collective intervention.