The Rotary Peace Centre at Makerere University with support from the Norwegian Government is conducting a two-day training for security officers from the UPDF, Prisons and Police on the importance of the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325. The training taking place at the Central Teaching Facility 1 started on Monday, 11th October 2020. It was officially opened by the Principal of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences (CHUSS), Dr Josephine Ahikire. It is being facilitated by members of staff from CHUSS, including Dr Helen Nambalirwa Nkabala, Director Rotary Peace Centre; Dr Charlotte Karungi Mafumbo from the Department of History, Archaeology and Heritage Studies (CHUSS); as well as Dr Samson Barigye and Dr Veneranda Mbabazi from the Department of Religion and Peace Studies. The training is aimed at raising awareness and strengthening the implementation of UNSCR 1325 in the country.
The United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325 was adopted on October 31, 2000, out of increasing concern over the lack of protection of women in situations of armed conflict. This resolution was adopted with the conviction that conflicts affect women and girls differently compared to men (Coalition for Action on 1325 & UN Women, 2016). The resolution calls for the participation of women at all levels of prevention, conflict resolution, post-conflict reconstruction, peacekeeping and decision making for sustained peace and security” (Coalition for Action on 1325 & UN Women, 2016: p.2). It further calls on member states to protect women and girls from sexual violence in all its forms in situations of armed conflict (UNSCR, 1325) while increasing women participation in peace operations.
Despite the fact that Uganda ratified the UNSCR 1325 and has made strides in placing women at strategic ends “to promote women’s visibility, representation and participation in decision-making in its National Action Plan, there is a significant dearth of women at decision making level. In spite of the deliberate effort to include women in political and security frameworks, the reality on the ground is quite different. There is persistent violation of the fundamental human rights of women and girls in “situations of armed conflict, in particular murder, systematic rape, sexual slavery and forced pregnancy, these have been documented in virtually all parts of Uganda that have experienced armed conflict” (Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development, 2008). These human rights violations have been exacerbated by the diminishing representation of women in their demands for redress. There is a clear implementation gap with regards to what is contained in the laws and various policies and what actually is happening in practice in the protection of women and girls.
The low implementation of the UNSCR 1325 and limited incorporation of its pillars in key strategic, policy and legal documents of key institutions at national and local government levels is attributed to three main factors; the limited knowledge among stakeholders of its relevance to their specific institutions, lack of a strong ownership of this resolution because it was not generated by these institutions and simply handed down by its respective advocates; and limited appreciation of why it is salient to the well-being of women and girls by the duty bears responsible for disseminating it. (Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development, 2008).
It is on this basis that the Norwegian Government through UN Women has facilitated the Rotary Peace Centre at Makerere to train Judicial and Security Officers in the country on the importance of the UNSRC 1325. In the course of the trainings, officers in critical departments will be equipped with skills required to mainstream UNSCR 1325 into their programming.
See details on the training in the manual below