LIBERIA: Liberia Gears Up For International Women's Day Celebration

Wednesday, March 2, 2011
In Profile Daily
Western Africa
PeaceWomen Consolidated Themes: 
General Women, Peace and Security

Programs marking this year's International Women's Day celebration with the Global theme: ‘'Equal Access to Education, Training, Science and Technology and the Pathway to Decent Work of Women,” are expected to be graced in Liberia and the World over.

Speaking at UNMIL's regular press briefing at its Sinkor Headquarters yesterday, UN Women Regional Director, Ms. Josephine Odera, noted that the General Assembly adopted a resolution proclaiming a United Nations Day for Women's Rights and International Peace to be observed by member states in accordance with their historical and national traditions.

She said this year's Women's Day has very historic content as many Liberians can recalled that the United Nations entity for general equality and women empowerment came into force on the 1st of January2011 with the United Nations Development Fund for Women-Liberia (UNIFEM) being its operations for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women).

Madam Odera stressed that UN Women's Liberia Office (Formerly UNIFEM Liberia),will continue its role as a key member of the UN Country Team in providing gender expertise on economic empowerment, agriculture, peace building, security sector reform, gender responsive budgeting, and women's political participation.

Speaking earlier, the Acting Minister Ministry of Gender and Development, Andrew Tehmeh said this year's program will be very elaborate commencing with a parade through the principle streets of Monrovia to be followed by an indoor program, which will highlight all of women's activities on the International Day of Women.

Mr. Tehmeh noted that on 17 March, there will be a sit in action of women at the National Legislature, using it to draw the attention of the Legislature to the gender, equality and empowerment bill already before the House of Representative and that there will be a roundtable discussion on the importance of girls' education and enrollment in science and shall conclude with an interactive forum to put forth issues of addressing women's activities in the country.

For his part, the Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary General,Moustapha Soumare' said in July 2009, the Office of the Gender Adviser in UNMIL commissioned a study to document the best practices for gender mainstreaming in peacekeeping work in Liberia that have proven to advance women's rights and gender equality.

Mr. Soumare' claimed that the study presented an opportunity to identify evidence-based best practices and lessons learnt in six areas of peacekeeping work to include Disarmament, Demobilization, Rehabilitation and Reintegration; (DDRR); the Police; Advocacy and Policy Making; Sexual and Gender Based Violence; and Female Peacekeepers and the Electoral Process. He explained further that the work was conducted through literature review as well as interviews and consultations with 87 key stakeholders and sources from the Liberian Government, UN system NGOs, INGOs and men and women from the communities in Liberia.

The occasion is expected to last for a week with guests coming from around the world to celebrate with the Liberian women for this year's event.