KICD 2017: Speech by Letty Chiwara, UN Women Representative to Ethiopia, AUC and ECA
Your Excellency, the President of the Republic of Uganda,
Director General of National Police of Algeria and Chair of KICD,
Inspector General of Police of Uganda and incoming Chair of KICD,
Distinguished Heads of Police from across Africa,
Heads and Members of Delegations representing Defense Forces, Prison Services, Justice and Internal Affairs,
Distinguished Representatives of the Diplomatic Corps and Development Cooperation Partners,
The UN Resident Coordinator in Uganda,
Colleagues, Heads of Agencies from the UN System in Uganda,
Ladies and Gentlemen.
Let me start by thanking the IGP of Uganda for inviting me to be part of this 6th AGM of the Kigali International Conference Declaration. I also want to thank you Your Excellency, President Museveni and all the people of your beloved country, Uganda for your warm hospitality and generosity – which makes Uganda one of the most visited countries in Africa.
Your Excellency, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen;
On 27 October 2010, I had the honor to witness the birth of the KICD. On that beautiful day in Kigali, Rwanda, more than 150 participants representing Police Chiefs, CID Directors, Senior Police and Military Officers responsible for Gender and Community Policing as well as prominent members of civil society organisations, UN, and academia drawn from 12 African countries unanimously adopted the KICD. In my closing remarks on that day, I expressed how impressed I had been to see “for the first time in my 15 years’ experience as a gender activist, a gathering of men than women in uniform discussing the complex issue of eliminating violence against women and girls”.
The uniqueness and seriousness of that international gathering was captured by the commitment, focus and active contribution of participants in the plenary panel discussions and working groups. For the first time, I saw Africa coming together as one, to invest in and enhance the role of security organs in Ending Violence against Women and Girls in Africa. In the words of the Commission General of Police (Rwanda);
“We have broken new ground and proclaimed a Kigali Declaration that shall be the Blue Print of the role of Security Organs in Ending Violence against Women and Girls .... We were honoured by the presence of delegates representing security organs from 12 African countries. Their active participation is a clear indication of their own government’s commitment to support this noble cause” (Rwanda CGP, 2010).
Allow me to take a few minutes of your attention to share a bit of background on the Campaign through which the KICD was borne. The Africa UNiTE Campaign was part of the former UN Secretary General, Mr. Ban ki Moon’s Global UNiTE Campaign to End Violence against Women and Girls (VAWG) which he officially launched on 25 February 2008. He did this in response to a call from feminist and women rights organizations from all parts of the world for collective and sustainable efforts to eliminate the human scourge of violence. The Africa UNiTE Campaign provided a platform for coordinated, strategic and enhanced visibility, advocacy and programming to address VAWG across all of Africa. Its overall objective was “to raise public awareness and increase political will and resources for preventing and responding to Violence against Women and girls in all parts of Africa.” Thus, the Campaign mobilized a wide range of actors: governments, civil society, women’s organizations, young people, the private sector, community and Faith Based Organizations, the media and the entire UN system to join forces in supporting governments to address this pandemic.