Stakeholders from the various sectors in the province gathered last March 19 at the Institute of Peace and Development in Mindanao Convergence Hall of the Mindanao State University to address women's rights in armed conflict situations.
The forum was organized by Al-Mujadillah Development Foundation (AMDF), a women's organization committed to promote women's rights, good governance and peace building towards gender-fair, humane and sustainable communities.
Zahria Muti-Mapandi, executive director of the AMDF, said the activity was in line with the efforts of the Philippine Commission on Women to popularize Republic Act 9710 or the Magna Carta of Women (MCW) and the National Action Plan (NAP) on the United Nations Security Council Resolutions stressing that the understanding of the MCW and NAP will make its implementation easier.
The forum was also intended to help communities and local government units in preparing and reflecting the NAP on their respective gender and development plans, she added.
Anchored on the MCW, particularly those provisions relating to peace and development, the NAP is the government's response to the landmark international normative standards on women, peace, and security.
The NAP aims to ensure the protection of women's human rights and prevention of violation of these in armed conflict and post-conflict situations; to empower women and ensure their active and meaningful participation in areas of peace building, peacekeeping, conflict prevention, conflict resolution and post-conflict reconstruction; to promote and mainstream gender perspective in all aspects of conflict prevention and resolution; and to institutionalize a system to monitor, evaluate and report its implementation.
Mapandi said the forum was one of the activities the AMDF has lined-up in celebration of the 2012 Women's Month. Other major activities include an orientation on women economic leadership to come-up with an assessment if women could also be leaders in agricultural markets, as well as barangay consultations on the establishment of the Violence Against Women Desk at the barangay level.