UNDP has partnered with UN Women and the House of Peoples’ Representatives (HoPR) to kick-off a new intervention to provide support for gender responsive parliament and empower women parliamentarians to enhance their participation in the upcoming national election.
The project aims at enhancing the effectiveness of the HoPR in mainstreaming gender in its parliamentary processes through: (i) empowering members of parliament to perform their legislative, oversight and representation functions in a gender-sensitive/responsive manner; and (ii) putting in place electoral frameworks and arrangements to promote women’s political participation and leadership.
The four-year project will promote women’s engagement in the electoral process targeting the upcoming 2020 national election; enhance the leadership capacity of women parliamentarians; and help to make electoral frameworks and processes in Ethiopia to be gender sensitive and responsive.
The kick-off meeting was held in the presence of the Secretary General and the Deputy Secretary General of the Secretariat of the HoPR. Speaking at the event, Dr. Misrak Mekonnen, Secretary General of the HoPR, stressed the need to build the capacity of the Secretariat of the HoPR to achieve sustainable changes in engendering the legislative process in parliament. Capacity building of future members of HoPR on gender sensitive law-making processes, support electoral arrangements to enhance women’s political participation and leadership, development of tools to enable parliamentarians to mainstream gender in their work as well as the need to have male champions on Gender Equality and Women Empowerment issues are some of the priority areas of the project.
UNDP’s support for gender responsive parliament and promotion of women’s engagement in electoral processes is part of a five year flagship Governance and Democratic Participation Programme (GDPP) that aims to support the country sustain efforts towards enhancing institutional capacities and frameworks for strengthening good governance and deepening of democratic participation.
The partnership in Ethiopia is also part of the global collaboration between UNDP and UN Women. The two organisations signed a Memorandum of Understanding back in July 2018 to strengthen women’s political leadership, ensure their involvement in elections and peacebuilding by supporting electoral and legal reforms among other areas of collaborations.