Download the NAP here
Liberia developed a NAP in 2009 for the time frame of 2009-2013.
The overall context of the NAP is its current post-conflict recovery phase and current UN Peacekeeping mission. The UN Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) has UNSCR1325 within its mandate and the government of Liberia has expressed UNSCR1325 as a high level priority.
The NAP is places an emphasis on the contributions of Liberian women to peace building and in post- conflict recovery - “women have played a significant role in ensuring a sustainable Peace Accord that has laid the basis for the current post-conflict recovery phase”
The implementation of UNSC1325 and NAP compliments Government of Liberia and UN joint programs already in place to advance gender equality and mainstream gender and is also linked to the Millennium Development Goals and UNSCR 1820
The stated goals of the NAP are to:
• Strengthen and develop prevention, response and protection policies, procedures and mechanisms that promote the human rights of women and girls and guarantee their security at both the national and the personal levels.
• Promote the design, development and institutionalization of economic, social and security policies that will empower women and girls to participate fully and effectively in Liberia’s peace-building, reconstruction, recovery and development processes at all levels, including at the decision-making levels.
• Strengthen the coordination and coherence of gender mainstreaming activities in Liberia by raising awareness of the letter and intent of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on women, peace and security and implementing its underlying principles.
The NAP also details a list of strategic ways to advance women’s equality and mainstream gender, which include:
• Monitoring and evaluation
• Strengthen coordination
• Promote partnerships and strategic linkages
• Data collection, storage and analysis
• Enhance donor commitment to Liberia
• Strengthen monitoring and watchdog role of civil society
• Accountability and ownership
See here for why time frames are important and useful.
The Liberian NAP does not have a budget. A lack of dedicated funding is the foremost challenge for NAP implementation. Find examples of budgets built into NAPs here.
Theme: Country Context
Liberia has a long history of systematic exploitation and armed violence against civilians perpetrated by successive oppressive dictatorships. The emergence of armed opposition groups vying for state power in the 1990’s mired Liberia in civil conflict for 14 years, which was characterized by gross human rights violations against populations, and disproportionately impacted women and children.
Sexual violence was systematically employed as a weapon, and was so widespread that the majority of women in Liberia were subjected to sexual and gender based violence. Cultures of violence against women, poor access to health and social support services, justice mechanisms and low conviction rates remain a significant challenge in the post-conflict context.
Women and women’s organizations were integral to the resolution of the conflict and signing of the peace agreement in 2003. Women have continued to be instrumental in local reconciliation efforts and overseeing and supporting the implementation of the peace agreement. Women have also been very active in supporting the democratic transition, peaceful elections and promotion of women’s interests and female candidates. The women’s movement for peace in Liberia was so integral to the ending the decades of violence, it has become an iconic symbol for women’s peace movements globally.
The present phase of reconciliation and reconstruction and presence of UN Peacekeeping mission in Liberia are reasons for situating the national implementation of UNSC1325 within the broader gender mainstreaming and UN support activities; as well as UNSCR1820 and the Millennium Development Goals.
The Liberian NAP is constructed on four Pillars: Protection, Prevention, Participation and Empowerment and Promotion. Each Pillar is linked to the relevant UNSCR1325 and UNSCR 1820 text as well as the applicable Millennium Development Goal.
Each Pillar contains a set of Strategic Issues. For example Pillar 4. “Promotion” is divided into four Strategic Issues, which includes:
• Promote the involvement of women’s groups in the implementation of the NAP and advocate for increased access to resources for both the government and women’s groups.
• Promote the participation of girls in conflict prevention, early warning, peace security issues and post conflict recovery issues through education and training.
• Enhance the technical and institutional capacities of governmental and civil society actors, including women’s groups to effectively implement the NAP.
• Promote the full involvement of governmental and civil society actors, including women’s groups in the monitoring and evaluation of the NAP.
Strategic Issues are then further broken down into Priorities, Outputs and Indicators. For example “Promote the full involvement of governmental and civil society actors, including women’s groups in the monitoring and evaluation of the NAP” contains the following elements:
Policy: Develop, consult and create monitoring and evaluation procedures and systems to monitor the implementation of the LNAP.
Monitoring Mechanisms: Transformation of the existing national Steering Committee into an effective monitoring body.
Involvement of civil society actors: Strategic engagement of civil society actors – especially women’s groups in monitoring the implementation of the NAP.
Ministry of Gender and Development 1325 Secretariat strengthened: Secretariat based at Ministry of Gender and Development strengthened with 2 additional staff (total of 4) including 2 Technical Experts, an Administrator and a Project Officer for 6 months to begin training on how to implement the NAP.
• Monitoring and evaluation forms created and adopted
• Training provided on use of the monitoring and evaluation forms
• National Steering Committee (NSC) restructured as a monitoring and evaluation body and includes Senior -Gender Advisers from each relevant government ministry.
• Creation of a civil society monitoring and evaluation Observatory of CBOs, LNGOs and INGOs, including women’s groups to monitor the implementation of the LNAP. Indictor
• Secretariat staffed and functioning to provide training on UNSC Resolutions 1325 and 1820.
• Number of actors utilizing monitoring and evaluating forms.
• Numbers of staff attending training and utilizing the monitoring and evaluation forms.
• Number of Gender Advisers attending the NSC.
• Frequency of monthly monitoring and evaluation meetings undertaken by the restructured NSC.
• Quarterly reports presented to Ministry of Gender and Development.
• Ministry of Gender and Development reports to the President annually on the progress of the implementation of the NAP.
• Number of women’s groups that are active members of the Observatory.
• Frequency of meetings held by the Observatory.
• Number of parallel reports including mid-term Progress report, produced and disseminated.
• End of implementation Shadow Report produced to complement Final report coordinated by Ministry of Gender and Development
• Training modules developed and approved by Ministry of Gender and Development.
• Numbers of training provided to Ministry of Gender and Development staff, Gender Advisers, Gender Focal points, staff of other ministries, media, CBOs, LNGOs, INGOs and private sector organizations.
These strategic objectives and related activities are not directly linked to responsible agencies, time-frames for completion or a specified budget. A separate guide to stakeholder activities and responsibilities is included as an appendix of the NAP.
The NAP does not include a dedicated budget or estimated implementation and monitoring costs. A footnote in the NAP states that the Ministry of Gender and Development is responsible for the development of a budget for the NAP.
Inadequate resources is identified as a risk to successful implementation and enhancing donor commitment and increasing funding for implementation of the NAP are listed as objectives to mitigate against this risk. Pillar 4 elaborates a number of activities to increasing resources, which includes promotion of the NAP particularly to donors. Relevant stakeholders are also required to integrate NAP implementation costs into their respective work-plans for donor funding and the Ministry of Finance.
The NAP is a four year `living` document that can be "adapted according to changes in the Liberian context".
Mechanisms for monitoring and impact evaluation will include an Civil Society Monitoring Observatory comprised of women’s groups and other NGOs, the existing 1325 National Steering Committee and a Technical Monitoring and Evaluation Task Force comprised of technical experts from Government Ministries and Agencies and Civil Society.
The NAP is to be implemented and evaluated at multiple levels. At the county level, monitoring and evaluation will be the responsibility of the Gender County Coordinators and the County Support Teams, however, the responsibility and accountability for the implementation of the NAP will rest with Ministers who must ensure compliance with the implementation and results time-frame.
Reporting requirements include annual reports to the President of Liberia on the implementation status of the NAP.
Interim Progress report to the country at the end of eighteen months and a Final Report to the President and Cabinet at the end of the 48 month implementation period.
At the International Level, implementation of the NAP will require reporting along the lines of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).
It is not stated in the NAP if these documents are to be made publicly available or disseminated beyond the National Steering Committee, Technical Monitoring and Evaluation Task Force and concerned Ministries.
Although the executive summary specifies the need to include women in “disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (DDR), and security sector reform (SSR) processes” the NAP does not comprehensively address disarmament issues or explicitly identify arms proliferation as a risk to national implementation of UNSCR 1325.
However, as a means to reduce trafficking, sexual abuse and exploitation and incidents involving small arms, the NAP commits to training women living close to border areas to better identify and address issues related to small arms.
Theme: Civil Society Actors
The NAP was developed with a rigorous process of inclusive consultation and participation involving roundtable discussions and bi-lateral interviews. The process engaged the views of a broad range of civil society actors, including women’s organizations, media, private micro credit institutions, interfaith institutions, donors and rural women.
The NAP states that the objectives of the interviews and discussions were to: “assess issues affecting women’s peace and security, map women’s positions and decision-making power in the institutions and agencies, identify projects directly or indirectly related to 1325 and in the process, raise awareness and promote knowledge of the letter and intent of the resolution and its principles regarding women’s peace and security issues”.
In addition to the development and consultation phase of the NAP, Civil Society also has an ongoing role in implementation, oversight and review through the Civil Society Monitoring Observatory. This body will include women’s organizations and will prepare a shadow report at the end of the four year term of the NAP.
Civil society will also play a role in the Technical Monitoring and Evaluation Task Force, which includes government.
Outside the formal processes elaborated in the NAP, Civil Society has an important informal role to play in supporting implementation and providing an oversight role. The following recommendations were concluded on behalf of Liberia's In-Country Civil Society Monitoring Report:
1. Government should improve efforts to identify and mentor qualified women for appointed positions in national and local leadership.
2. The government should conduct an evaluation of the progress made in implementing policies and action plans related to women, peace and security issues. This evaluation should take into consideration achievements, weaknesses and opportunities for program strengthening.
3. The Security Sector should continue to work on reaching and exceeding the 20% policy goal of women’s participation.
4. Government should rededicate themselves to the implementation of the National Gender Policy, as well as all other gender-related policies including the National Gender Based Violence Plan of Action.
5. The Law Reform Commission, the Legislature and all other relevant government parties should improve the incorporation of the Rape Act and the Inheritance Act into the Liberian Penal Code, especially with regard to the contradictory age of consent question.
6. The development agenda, both nationally and internationally, should prioritize building the capacity of local stakeholders, including female chiefs and other traditional leaders, to monitor and support programs seeking to improve the economic livelihood and participation of rural women.
7. Existing efforts to develop the skills of media practitioners, including women in gender sensitive reporting should continue to be built on.
8. Government and other organizations should work with the Press Union of Liberia and with local universities to design advanced gender educational programs for editor and managers.
9. The government and other organizations should support mentorship and scholarship programs for female journalist including those working at community radios.
10. A code of conduct should be developed in consultation with civil society and all other relevant stakeholders, to address sexual harassment and other forms of gender –based violence in the media.