Media Practitioners to Advocate for Women Involvement in Peace and Security
By Bashir Hassan Abubakar
The need to involve media practitioners in advocating for women participation in the decision making process in the areas of peace, conflicts resolution and security was the topic for discussion at a one day sensitization meeting with media practitioners in Bauchi State.
The sensitization meeting, organised by the state implementation committee on Women, Peace and Security (SIC) with technical support from international Alert, was part of activities geared towards the implementation of the Bauchi State Policy on Women, Peace and Security recently adopted by the state government.
Speaking shortly before the commencement of the meeting, the state commissioner of information, Alhaji Garba Dahiru said the decision to involve journalists in the implementation process was quite commendable.
Represented by the permanent secretary in the ministry, Ibrahim Abarshi Maidawa, the commissioner also expressed the ministry’s readiness and support towards achieving the desired goals set out in the policy document.
Making a presentation to keep the media practitioners abreast on the role of women in peace, conflicts and security, State manager of international Alert, Miss Jennifer Dashe Manmark said that, despite women’s positive participation and contributions during times of conflicts, women are excluded from decision making, peace processes and negotiations.
Manmark also said that Women, Peace and Security agenda recognizes that peace is linked with equality between women and men.
She disclosed that the policy document that was adopted by Bauchi State Government was inline with the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 (UNSCR 1325) passed by the the UN Security Council in October 2000.
She pointed out that the UN resolution recognizes the role of women as peace builders and agents of change.
She further called on participants to advocate for women’s increased participation in conflict prevention, peace negotiations and general security processes.
A communique was issued at the end of the sensitization meeting, where journalists made a strong commitment to report on issues relating to peace, conflict resolution and security as they relate to women.
The participants also stressed the importance of equal participation and full involvement of women towards maintaining and promoting peace and security and involvement of women in the decision making process at the level of traditional institutions.
The communique read in part: Meeting commends International Alert for sensitizing the Media on women participation in peace, security, negotiation and conflict prevention.
That the media should be mobilized to promote and enlighten women on their role in peace building, security and conflict resolution.
The communique also commended Bauchi State Government for assenting to the Violence Against Persons Prohibition law but called for the implementation of all policies and laws relating to gender issues.
Our correspondent reports that 25 journalists, including the state chairman of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Bauchi Council, Comrade Umar Sa’idu, cut across print and electronic media, took part in the one day meeting, put together by the State Implementation Committee with technical support from international Alert Nigeria.