Women's Rights: Accra Peace Agreement
ARTICLE XXVIII: NATIONAL BALANCE
The Parties shall reflect national and gender balance in all elective and non-elective appointments within the NTGL.
ARTICLE XXXI: VULNERABLE GROUPS
1. (a) The NTGL shall accord particular attention to the issue of the rehabilitation of vulnerable groups or war victims (children, women, the elderly and the disabled) within Liberia, who have been severely affected by the conflict in Liberia.
(b) With the support of the International Community, the NTGL shall design and implement a program for the rehabilitation of such war victims.
3. The NTGL, in formulating and implementing programs for national rehabilitation, reconstruction and development, for the moral, social and physical reconstruction of Liberia in the post-conflict period, shall ensure that the needs and potentials of the war victims are taken into account and that gender balance is maintained in apportioning responsibilities for program implementation.
ARTICLE XVI: ESTABLISHMENT OF A GOVERNANCE REFORM COMMISSION
3. The Structure of the Commission shall be as follows:
(a) The Commission shall be established as an independent Commission with seven (7) permanent members appointed by the Chairman and confirmed by the NTLA, from a list provided by civil society organisations. It shall have a chairperson who must be from the civil society. Its membership shall include women.
ARTICLE XXIV THE NATIONAL TRANSITIONAL LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY (NTLA)
3. The NTLA shall have a maximum of Seventy-six (76) members who shall come from the following entities:
(b) The present Government of Liberia, the LURD, MODEL, the Political Parties, Civil Society and Interest Groups including the National Bar Association, the Liberian Business Organisations, Women Organizations, Trade Unions, Teachers Union, Refugees, the Liberians in the Diaspora/America and the Youth.
A group of 8 women from the Mano River Women's Peace Network (MARWOPNET) participated in the Accra peace talks as observers. Concern over inadequate representation led women's groups to later publish the Golden Tulip Declaration, which listed women's priorities and established a follow-up committee to ensure women's full participation in the post-conflict processes. The Declaration focused on increasing women's participation in decision making on issues varying from the government to HIV/AIDS prevention.1
- 1. "The Golden Tulip Declaration of Liberian Women Attending the Peace Talks in Accra Ghana," PeaceWomen, September 1, 2003, accessed May 10, 2011, http://www.peacewomen.org/publications_enews_issue.php?id=105.
In a theme that runs throughout the whole of Liberia's reconstruction, women's groups demanded more involvement in the process and political sphere. Only 4 of the 75 members of the National Transitional Legislative Assembly (NTLA) and 3 of the 21 cabinet members in the transitional government were women. This disparity prompted women's groups to demand that the National Electoral Commission (NEC) require all political parties to field at least 30% female candidates in the 2005 elections.2
A National Women's Conference was held from May 10-14 and was supported by the UNDP, UNMIL, USAID, and the Liberian government. 250 participants from women's organizations attended the conference. The conference set a national agenda for the full participation of women in the reconstruction process.3
Responding to pressure from women's groups, the NEC stated it would require parties to field at least 30% female candidates in the October 2005 elections.4 The within-party nomination process proved difficult and only 14% of candidates in the October 2005 elections were female.5
The restructuring of the police and armed forces of Liberia was a process that was supposed to result in forces that reflected the national composition of Liberia. Of the 1,633 police officers trained by April 2006, 87 were female. Sources mention difficulty in finding willing recruits.6
- 6. "Liberia; Women Snub Police Recruitment Drive," Africa News, April 21, 2006.
The recruitment of women into both forces lagged substantially behind that of men. In the 4th class of recruits, the National Police Training Academy graduated women at a 4:77 ratio compared to men. Commissioner Alba Williams of the Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization stated that there were supply problems surrounding the lack of women recruits.7
- 7. "Liberia; More Females Encouraged Into Security Service," Africa News, January 29, 2007.
A five-day national women's conference was held in Monrovia. The conference was organized by the Ministry of Gender and Development in partnership with the UN and other actors. The theme of the conference was "Advancing Women's Human Rights in Peace Building, Recovery, and Reconstruction in Liberia."8
- 8. "Liberia; Women are Key to Peace," Africa News, May 7, 2008.
President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf unveiled the new Liberia National Gender Policy on 18 December, 2009. This policy rose out of consultation with civil society, government ministries, the UN system in Liberia, women's groups, and local and international NGOs. The policy focused on opening opportunities in employment, compensation, land ownership, credit, literacy, and access to justice for women. The announcement of the policy coincided with the beginning of the Second Annual Rural Women Conference in Monrovia.9
- 9. "Liberia; Pres. Sirleaf Launches National Gender Policy Dec. 17," Africa News, December 16, 2009.
The implementation of the Gender Policy program has not been evaluated.
No further developments observed.
No further developments observed.