The AU Gender Policy, which was released in 2009, cites both international gender equality instruments-- including UNSCR 1325-- as well as African instruments, such as the 1995 Maputo Protocol.
Theme: Government Actors
Article 12(3) of the Statute of the AU Commission provides that because "gender issues are cross-cutting through all the portfolios of the Commission," a special unit in the Office of the Chairperson will be established.
The gender mainstreaming work of the AU Commission is led by the Women and Gender Development Directorate (WGDD), created in 2000.
The AU seeks to establish a working Gender Management System (GMS). Currently, the majority of Regional Economic Commissions (RECs) have their own Gender Units.
The role that ministries within individual Member States must take to implement the AU Gender Policy is also elaborated upon.
Theme: Civil Society Actors
The Gender Policy states that civil society constituencies will work with ECOSOCC, the NEPAD initiative APRM and other AU structures on gender mainstreaming.
The grassroots activities of the African Women's Decade will serve to craft policies that will then be implemented by AU Organs, RECs and Member States.
The African Women's Movement and the Council of Female Elders will also serve to advise on gender policy, programmes, donor financing and partnership.
The media is encouraged to act as a lobby group to further gender agenda and be a communication channel for "dissemination and sensitization at the grass root level."
The establishment of the African Women Trust Fund will be one mechanism to ensure policy implementation.
All AU Organs, RECs and Member States will include gender budgeting principles in annual budgetary processes for implementation of the policy by 2015.
An interagency mechanism for ensuring accountability in the use of earmarked funds must be established by 2011.
According to the Solemn Declaration on Gender Equality in Africa, which the AU Gender Policy seeks to uphold and promote, the intergovernmental actors must:
Report annually on compliance and implementation to the January Assembly
Launch and operationalize the African Women Trust Fund by December 2009
Achieve 30% results by 2015 and 50% by 2012 of measures set out UN Resolution 1325
The AU WGDD Director will establish a mechanism to track implementation of the GMS and Gender Policy using a set of benchmarks.