As efforts continue to sustain Liberia’s peace during and after the 2017 elections, the Angie Brooks International Centre for Women’s Empowerment (ABIC) in collaboration with the Government of Norway, through its Embassy in Accra, as well as the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), have signed a contribution agreement in support of US$476,000 to ensure a peaceful elections in the country through the Women Situation Room (WSR).
Speaking at the signing ceremony, ABIC’s establishing coordinator, Cllr. Yvette Chesson Wureh, explained that the Women’s Situation room will work along with Civil Society Organizations, politicians, youth groups, student organizations, the disabled community , National Police and politicians to ensure that the country remain peaceful during and after the elections.
According to her the WSR will carry out peace messages across the counties because the WSR is a women’s peace building mechanism to mitigate conflict before, during and after elections in African countries.
She lauded the efforts of the citizens of Kenya for being peaceful in the just ended verdict by the Supreme Court in the maintenance of peace.
“We are prepared to work because as part of our work, we set up a physical situation room that observes the elections through its eminent women mediators, respond rapidly to threats, incidents of violence as and when they are reported.” She mentioned that they will cover Monrovia, Grand Bassa, Lofa, Nimba, Sinoe and other parts of the country and will have contact numbers according to centers.
At the same time, the Acting Country Director of UNDP, Madam Rose Baguma, said the signing of the MOU was to reaffirm her organization’s support to a violence-free elections process in the country.
She reaffirmed the partnership with Norway and UNDP’s partnership with the Government of Liberia in the democratic process and urged Liberians to maintain the peace. She also lauded the efforts of Liberian women for their contributions to a peaceful process.
For her part, the Second Secretary of the Embassy of Norway, Hon. Ingrid Buli, disclosed that the signing ceremony was very significant and the support given to the WSR will contribute to the successful implementation of the situation room that will keep the peace.
Hon. Buli explained that during the visit of the Norwegian Crowned Prince to Liberia recently, he lauded the efforts of Liberians for their tireless efforts in maintaining the peace and development process of the country. She pledged her country’s long term partnership in Liberia.
“I am privileged to acknowledge the partnership between the two countries and look forward to the collaboration of a lasting peace during and after the elections,” she said.
Meanwhile, The WSR-Liberia 2017, with administrative and financial support from UNDP and the Government of Norway and other partners, will carry out a number of activities in the lead up to the elections. These activities include coordination by regional hubs to mobilize women and youth to advocate for peace before, during and after the elections; a 15,000 Women’s Peace March; Elections Observation and more. The WSR-Liberia 2017 has also received support from UNWOMEN, the US Embassy Public Affairs Section in Liberia, UNMIL & the African Women’s Development Fund.
Norway has remained a strong partner with the Government and people of Liberia and its support has helped strengthen the institutional capacity of Liberia’s justice and security institutions to uphold the rule of law and improve access to justice. It can be recalled that in April this year, Liberia hosted His Highness, Crown Prince Haakon of Norway.
The Angie Brooks International Centre is named in honor of Liberian diplomat and jurist, the late Angie Elizabeth Brooks, the first and only African woman to serve as President of the United Nations General Assembly to date. ABIC is an apolitical, non-profit organization focused on women’s empowerment, leadership development & role in international peace & security. The WSR has been replicated in six African Countries and will be replicated in Liberia with best practices and lessons learned from these countries.