Women, Peace, and Security (WPS) is a critical global framework that recognizes the unique experiences and contributions of women in conflict prevention, resolution, and peace building. South Sudan, a nation that has experienced protracted conflict and instability, has also embraced this agenda.
The launch of the Women, Peace, and Security agenda in South Sudan would involve various initiatives and efforts to promote gender equality and women’s participation in peace and security processes. These initiatives typically include:
National Action Plan: The government of South Sudan under the ministry of gender child and social welfare are working on the newly tabled National Action Plan (NAP) on Women, Peace, and Security. This plan will outline specific strategies and actions to implement the WPS agenda in the country.
Capacity Building: Efforts to build the capacity of women and women’s organizations in South Sudan, enabling them to participate effectively in peace negotiations, conflict resolution, and decision-making processes.
Advocacy and Awareness: Promoting awareness about the importance of women’s participation in peace and security efforts among policymakers, civil society organizations, and the general public.
Monitoring and Reporting: Establishing mechanisms for monitoring and reporting on the implementation of the WPS agenda to assess progress and identify challenges.
Inclusive Peace Processes: Advocating for the inclusion of women in peace negotiations and peace-building activities, ensuring that their perspectives and needs are taken into account.
International Support: Collaborating with international organizations, such as the United Nations, and seeking support from the international community to implement WPS initiatives effectively.
Remarks from the director of YWCA South Sudan
During the launch the director of YWCA South Sudan stated that the organization is working tirelessly together with other national/international organization and government to make sure women are included in leadership and in promoting rights of women/girls not forgetting men. She also emphasized on information sharing being one of the core concerns to the citizens of South Sudan since there are a lot of gaps between the communities and the government at national level.
Remarks from the ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare South Sudan
Representative from the ministry applauded YWCA/Z-G Partners and other WLOs/CSOs in working together to ensure WPS agenda is promoted in the region as a whole in order to protect women/girls and boys/people with disabilities from GBV/SGBV in the communities.
According to the ministry, they have developed National Action Plans (NAPs) to take the concerns of women and girls/people with disabilities into consideration. Although, they are facing challenges of implementing the NAPs due to financial constraints.
The ministry also talked of the development of Anti-GBV bill, Family Law, Women Empowerment bill being drafted, and other legal frameworks that defend and protect the rights of women/girls in the country. She further thanked the donor communities for organizing such vital programs that support and protect the rights of women and girls not forgetting people with disabilities.
Remarks from Norwegian Embassy
As per the South Sudan WPS launch, the representative highlighted that the government of Norway was also launching its third strategy on WPS showing the commitment of the government in protecting the rights of women and girls. He stated that to empower women in the society is crucial since they make up more than half of the population. He further encouraged the involvement of women in peace negotiations since they are peacemakers naturally. Finally he mentioned that a society that does not support and acknowledge the efforts of women is never a better society.
The ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare stated that government together with other stakeholders should lobby for the women at the grassroots in order for their voices to be raised to reach the national government. They also encouraged the CSOs and WLOs to carryout awareness campaigns on WPS in order for the country to realize the theme “Building a better society that prevents and protect the rights of women and girls”.
Representatives from the Transitional National Legislative Assembly recommended that to be able to realize 35% affirmative action, women should join political parties to be involved in political affairs. They also stated that YWCA should be in close contact with the parliament and also the donors should support women affairs in all the political parties in order to participate actively in politics.
Finally the director of YWCA stated that for South Sudan to ensure WPS in the country, we should all create conducive environment for women and girls, coordination between the communities and CSOs/WLOs should be maintained in order to raise the voices of women and girls to the government at National level.