ZAMBIA and the United Nations (UN) system have signed two agreements involving a K100 billion total financial package towards the implementation of programmes to mitigate against Gender-Based Violence (GBV) and good governance issues.
The agreements were signed by Secretary to the Treasury, Fredson Yamba on behalf of the Zambian Government and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Country Representative, Kanni Wignaraja at the Ministry of Finance in Lusaka yesterday.
The programmes aim to mitigate GBV and promote human rights, dignity of individual citizens and inclusive governance.
The support is contained in two separate but inter-linked programmes, namely the Government and the UN Joint Programme on GBV with a budget of K12.5 billion while the governance programme has a budget equivalent to K16 billion.
Mr Yamba appealed for support from cooperating partners to finance the gap of K65 billion and K20 billion for the GBV and governance programmes, respectively.
The joint programme against GBV was jointly funded by the UN system and other cooperating partners while the governance programme was funded by the UNDP together with bilateral partners.
Mr Yamba said the signing was important in the operationalisation of the UN-Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) for the period 2011 to 2015 and that the period was important for Zambia because it coincided with the close of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) campaign and the first term in office of the Patriotic Front Government.
"It is, therefore, the intention of the Government to consolidate achievements in the MDGs while reorienting national development priorities to ensure greater human dignity for Zambians," Mr Yamba said.
He welcomed the support from the UN because development was based on national priorities and responsive to the reorientation of priorities that occurred after the PF came into office.
He said the programmes signed focused on fundamental areas in Zambia's development areas which included the Constitution drafting process, public sector reforms, strengthening public participation in national processes, promoting human rights and implementation of anti-GBV programmes.
Mr Yamba said the support in the field of governance would contribute to greater coherence of national policies and programmes.
"This is important because Zambia's economic base is expanding and the role of capital is increasingly taking greater space in national development through both national and international companies registering their operations in Zambia, and we would like to reaffirm Government's commitment towards effective implementation of programmes," he said.
Ms Wignaraja said the two programmes were based on core national priorities and embraced the orientation of the Government's human development agenda.
She said the two programmes were a practical step in the implementation of UN reforms on delivering-as-one in Zambia.