The United Nations Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Africa (UNREC), the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) and the United Nations Regional Office for Central Africa (UNOCA) have organised in collaboration with the Government of Cameroon, a sub-regional workshop to strengthen the technical capacities of the actors involved in the implementation of the Kinshasa Convention on Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW) in Yaoundé, from 24 to 26 April 2019. The workshop has benefited from the technical support of CPS-AVIP whose contribution had a focus on the gender perspective in the implementation of the Kinshasa Convention on Small Arms and Action Plan.
The Kinshasa Convention was unanimously adopted on 30 April 2010 in Kinshasa, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, under the United Nations Program of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in all its aspects. This sub-regional instrument for the regulation and fight against illicit trade and trafficking in SALW entered into force on 8 March 2017. Of the eleven (11) signatory States, seven (7) ratified the Convention, namely, Angola, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Republic of Congo, Gabon, São Tomé and Príncipe and Chad. The National Assembly of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) voted on 23 November 2018, the law for the ratification of the Convention.
For three days, participants were trained and supported in establishing SALW control mechanisms in their respective countries, strengthening the capacities of Central African states and formulating an action plan for effective implementation to contribute in silencing guns in Africa by 202. As part of CPS – AVIP’s advocacy on gender dimension as presented by Ms Meeti, the representative of CPS - AVIP. Satisfaction as it has turned out that the message of the CPS – AVIP was well received and understood. As a fact, the Yaoundé Declaration at the end of the three days of work underlined recommendations including CPS – AVIP's contribution concerning gender perspective:
1. The representation of women's experts in the National Committees on the SAWL under United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 (2000).
2. Strengthening gender parity in the various initiatives aimed at silencing guns in Africa by 2020.
Finally, the integration of the gender perspective in peace and security initiatives is crucial to give women and men the same opportunities to play roles in all actions carried out in the context of the implementation of the Kinshasa Convention at the normative, institutional and operational level.
Jean Claude Kabuiku
CPS - AVIP / Birmingham - United Kingdom