Displaying items 1 - 15 of 20 in total
  • Archive Resource

    Advancing Women's Empowerment or Rolling Back the Gains? Peace Building in Post-Conflict Sierra Leone

    When the Sierra Leone civil war was declared over in January 2002, the concept of women’s empowerment was firmly entrenched in development discourse and practice. The aftermath of the brutalities of rape, gang rape, sexual slavery, forced pregnancy, abduction, among other atrocities that women and children, especially girls, were subjected to during Sierra Leone’s eleven years’ civil war was firmly on the post-war agenda. There was a groundswell of protest from women’s NGOs and activists demanding the protection and promotion of women’s rights as part of peace negotiations, post-conflict reconstruction and peace consolidation processes.  …

  • Archive Resource

    Forging Ahead Without An Affirmative Action Policy: Female Politicians In Sierra Leone's Post-War Electoral Process

    In contemporary post-conflict Sierra Leone, women have managed to secure 13. 5 per cent of seats in parliament – without affirmative action in place, thanks to women's groups' and coalitions' mobilisation and activism. While the political resistance to Sierra Leone having a quota was high, the women's movement has succeeded in forcing the political parties and the government to recognize that it is no longer politically viable to sidestep women's rights, should they wish to capitalise on women's voting power. As women's organisations, in particular the 50/50 group, continue the struggle to introduce a quota, the challenge for Sierra Leonean women is how to ensure that the quota project is not hijacked by the male-dominated political establishment. …

  • Archive Resource

    Independent Candidacy: An Alternative Political Pathway for Women in Sierra Leone?

    This chapter examines the political pathway of women who choose to run as independent candidates, against all odds. It argues that while these women have many of the prerequisites to win, the stakes against them are high. A constellation of factors, described at length in this chapter, work against opting for independent candidacy as a pathway of engaging politically. …

  • Archive Resource

    Quotas: Add Women And Stir?

    At the Millennium Summit world leaders committed to reducing extreme poverty through a series of targets encompassed within the MDGs, with a deadline of 2015. One of these was to promote gender equality and empower women, and the ‘proportion of seats held by women in national parliament’ was set as a key indicator. With the MDG Review Summit meeting in September 2010, this is an opportunity to consider whether the proportion of women in parliament continues to be the most adequate proxy for women’s political empowerment. This IDS Bulletin explores what the quota has meant as a motorway to women’s accession to political power by drawing on research findings from the Pathways of Women’s Empowerment Research Programme Consortium (‘Pathways’), as well as a series of articles from a special seminar in the Brazilian National Congress as part of this programme, and contributions from other country case studies. …

  • Archive Resource

    The Meaning And Practice Of Women's Empowerment In Post-Conflict Sierra Leone

    Hussainatu J. Abdullah and Aisha Fofana-Ibrahim address the meaning and practice of women’s empowerment in Sierra Leone’s post-conflict reconstruction and peace consolidation processes from the perspectives of the Government of Sierra Leone and the UN system in Sierra Leone. These two institutions illustrate how women’s empowerment has been pursued in two institutions with key roles and positions in Sierra Leone’s post-war renewal processes. …

  • Archive Resource

    UN Security Council Resolution 1325 And Peacebuilding In Sierra Leone: An Impact Study

    The UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security is the outcome of over a decade-long advocacy and collaborative engagement between civil society, academics and policy actors to get the international community to recognize the plight of women and girls not only in conflict situations, but also in post-war reconstruction activities. The contents of the document are built on four pillars: participation, protection, prevention, and finally relief and recovery. This paper analyses the implementation of UNSCR 1325 in Sierra Leone’s post-war reconstruction and peacebuilding processes from the end of the war in 2002 to the tenth-year anniversary of the Resolution in 2010. The researchers found that there has been an increase in women’s representation in politics and public decision-making spaces, although there is still much work to be done in this regard. …

  • Archive Resource

    Women And Politics In Post-War Sierra Leone (2002-2011) (Case Study)

    In this policy brief Hussainatu J. Abdullah discusses the effect on Sierra Leonean women of a series of transformatory policies to rebuild the economy and to advance social and gender relations (including the reinstitution of local governance and holding of national elections) after Sierra Leone's 11 year civil war, from January 2002. The objective of Abdullah’s research was to assess the implementation of the government’s gender equality and mainstreaming framework in the arena of politics and public sector governance. Recommendations for increasing Sierra Leonean women’s political participation are given. …

  • Archive Resource

    Women And Politics In Post-War Sierra Leone (2002-2011) (Policy Brief)

    As part of its post-war reconstruction and peace consolidation efforts, the Government of Sierra Leone has noted in all its policy documents that gender equality is a cross-cutting issue and will be included in all government policies, programmes and projects across all sectors of society. The objective of this research was to assess the government’s gender equality and mainstreaming framework in the arena of politics and public sector governance. The author found that despite the government’s policy initiatives, women’s political empowerment within the structures of government were unsatisfactory. However, Women have continued to actively engage the state and political parties to increase their numbers in government. …

  • Archive Resource

    Women And Politics In Post-War Sierra Leone (2002-2011) (Report)

    The objective of this study was to assess the implementation of the government’s gender equality and mainstreaming framework in the arena of politics and public sector governance. The paper discusses: election results and post-war changes in female participation and political representation; Affirmative Action policies; the effect of the women’s movement on women’s political representation; the electioneering process. The paper concludes that opportunities created by the post-war moment have opened up the male-dominated political arena to female politicians, in spite of threats of violence including rape and intimidation, and women have moved ahead to claim their space however small, through articulated demands for inclusion in governance. This increase is shown to be more of their own making as individuals and as a coalition than of a political will from a male-dominated system of governance. …

  • Archive Resource

    Women In Local Governance In Post-Conflict Sierra Leone

    This paper is a critical examination of the implementation of the government’s gender equality framework to its decentralization programme. It is argued that the practice of local governance in post-war Sierra Leone which, is far below the Beijing minimum of 30 per cent, rather than leave women disillusioned, has spurred them on to actively engage the state, political parties and the National Electoral Commission to demand a legislative quota to enhance women’s participation and a conducive political atmosphere to level the playing field for women in local governance. …

  • Archive Resource

    Women In Politics In Sierra Leone Case Study

    Despite the engagement of Sierra Leonean women in the peace process, and efforts to increase women’s participation in public life, they face difficulties today in entering parliamentary politics. Since the end of the country’s brutal civil war in 2002, Sierra Leone has had two national and two local elections, with a third taking place in 2012. Despite some positive changes, especially at the local level, women continue to be underrepresented in Sierra Leone’s political institutions. …

  • Archive Resource

    Women's Voices, Work And Bodily Integrity In Pre-Conflict, Conflict And Post-Conflict Reconstruction Processes In Sierra Leone (Article)

    This article focuses on the historical trajectories of women's empowerment in Sierra Leone, taking three entry-points as a means of exploring the dynamics of change over the pre-conflict, conflict and post-conflict periods: voice and political participation; work and economic participation; and bodily integrity. Looking at pathways of empowerment in pre-conflict Sierra Leone, at experiences of women during the time of conflict over the course of a long and brutal civil war from 1991–2002, and at post-conflict possibilities, the article highlights some of the changes that have taken place in women's lives and the avenues that are opening up in Sierra Leone in a time of peace. It suggests that understanding women's pathways of empowerment in Sierra Leone calls for closer attention to be paid to the dynamics of conflict and post-conflict reconstruction, and to the significance of context in shaping constraints and opportunities. …

  • Archive Resource

    Women's Voices, Work And Bodily Integrity In Pre-Conflict, Conflict And Post-Conflict Reconstruction Processes In Sierra Leone (Report)

    A summary of the changes that have taken place in Sierra Leonean women’s lives in the last 20 years in the three thematic research areas of voice and participation, work and access to resources, and bodily integrity entails a situation analysis of women’s pre-conflict, conflict and post-conflict reconstruction activities in these fields. This is because the primary defining feature of the period 1986-2006 is the civil war years of 1991-2002. Armed conflicts, whether inter or intra state, leave behind not only human carnage, massive destruction of physical and socio-economic infrastructure (the Sierra Leone civil war was no exception to this reality), but also at the political level a weak and collapsed state. At the socio-cultural level, war also destroys the patriarchal structures of society like morals, traditions, customs and community, that confine and degrade women and opens up and creates new beginnings. …

  • Research Project

    Development Gender and Empowerment 53.2

    This special issue of 'Development' picks up some of the contentions and contestations that have accompanied the uptake of 'women's empowerment' by the development industry. Contributors reflect on their own personal and political engagement with the term and what it has come to represent. …

  • Research Project

    Discourses on Women's Empowerment in Sierra Leone

    Pre-war discourses of empowerment which were mainly around issues of development have now changed, in this post-war era, to include issues of gender equality, participation and voice, among others. This project has tracked these changes in relation to women’s conceptions of empowerment during this period. …