Women’s Participation in Peace Processes – Lessons from Kenya
11 July, 18.30-20.30, Café Playing with Eels
With Dr. Tecla Namachanja Wanjala (Former Commissioner of the Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission Kenya)
The inclusion of women’s voices in peace processes goes beyond the question of representation and numbers. Research has shown that women’s involvement strongly influences not only the legitimacy but also the sustainability of peace processes. Against this backdrop, UN resolution 1325 in 2000 and following resolutions have called upon the international community to enhance the representation of women in peace processes and to make it count. Germany has made the implementation of resolution 1325 a priority area for its work as a member of the UN Security Council 2019-2020. To support the implementation of 1325 effectively, learning from best practices is of crucial importance.
Together with Mrs. Wanjala, we would like to discuss the role of women in peace processes in Africa, focussing especially on Kenya. Following their successful engagement in previous peace processes, women’s groups played a pivotal role in the Kenyan peace process that followed post-election violence and ethnic clashes in 2007-2008, where they managed to successfully place issues such as gender-based violence and gender representation on the agenda. Tracing both the evolution of women’s engagement in Kenyan peace processes in the past decades and the strategies used by women’s groups in the post-2007 peace process, this Polis Teatime aims to shed light on the lessons that can be drawn from the Kenyan example and on how the international community, including Germany as Security Council member, can overcome the implementation gap of 1325.
Dr. Tecla Namachanja Wanjala has a life-long experience in conflict resolution efforts in Eastern and Southern Africa. She is the Director of the Social Healing and Reconciliation Program of the Green String Network in Nairobi and was one of the Commissioners of the Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission Kenya (TJRC-Kenya). During the land clashes in 1991/1992, she served as Relief and Rehabilitation Coordinator for victims under the Catholic Diocese of Bungoma and the National Coordinator for the Peace and Development Network.