The European Union and the Federal Government yesterday signed an agreement for a programme aimed at promoting women's engagement in peace and security in Northern Nigeria.
The European Union is funding the 1Om Euros (N2.1bn) worth of project, which will be implemented by the United Nations Women (UN Women) in partnership with the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF).
The agreement was signed by Supervising Minister of National Planning Commission, Ambassador Bashir Yuguda on behalf of the Federal Government of Nigeria, while the European Union Ambassador to Nigeria, Michel Arrion, signed on behalf of the EU.
EU said, the programme is in line with the 2011 Annual Action Plan approved by the European Commission, covering a number of projects in priority sectors jointly agreed in the context of the Country Strategy Paper signed between Nigeria and the EU in November 2009.
According to the EU ambassador, 'The Programme aligns with the EU's Country Strategy paper for Nigeria and Comprehensive Approach to the EU Implementation of the United Nations Security Council Resolutions 1325 and 1885, the new local regular dialogue on peace, security and stability as agreed in the Third Nigeria-EU Ministerial meeting (8th February 2012) and the EU Action Plan on Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment in development (2010-2015). The Programme will also contribute to meeting the national aspirations as encapsulated in the Nigeria's vision 20:2020″.
The project also seeks to create mechanisms to enhance women's participation in peace building.
It follows the multi-level model for implementation of the United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325, and contributes to it through three specific and inter-related objectives: Support women's participation in conflict prevention and peace building; develop tools and mechanisms to mitigate conflict's impact on women and girls; and establish a conducive environment for strengthening the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325.