Inclusive Democratic Governance
Democratic and transparent governance processes that promote peace, security and stability, social cohesion, the protection of human rights, and gender equality, are prerequisites for prosperity and inclusive development. Our Inclusive and Democratic Governance Cluster in Sierra Leone focuses on strengthening governance processes and supporting the development of governance institutions to be more responsive to citizens’ demands and inclusive development. The Cluster addresses structural issues pertaining to the rule of law and human rights including with respect to gender, participation and accountability while working in partnership with public and international institutions, as well as Civil Society Organizations.
The Inclusive and Democratic Governance Cluster also supports relevant institutions to enable improved access to justice and to enhance implementation of local administration reforms by capacitating oversight and accountability institutions to perform their mandates based on international human rights standards and practices while supporting dialogue for sustained peace in the country.
Consistent to our work on Inclusive Democratic Governance in Sierra Leone are two key areas:
- Strengthening Democratic Institutions
- Rule of Law, Human Rights, Strengthening Peace and social Cohesion
Strengthening Democratic Institutions
On Strengthening Democratic Institutions Portfolio, UNDP Sierra Leone supports the completion of the constitutional review process started in 2014 and further strengthen electoral management bodies, and electoral courts, in partnership with the European Union, United Kingdom Department for International Development (DfID) and Irish Aid. Key areas of focus include improving the electoral laws; promoting the establishment of an electoral support fund; advocating for the affirmative action bill for increased representation of women in elected office; and promoting inter-party dialogue; support capacity-building for Members of Parliament (MPs) in areas such as consensus-building, law making and outreach including Women’s Caucus through South-South cooperation on how to champion legislation that is responsive to gender and persons with disabilities; making systems more transparent (for example through e-governance); building CSO capacities to champion social accountability; building integrity and values through integrity committees and networks in schools; and linking government institutions with good governance practices and anti-corruption measures.
Rule of Law, Human Rights, Strengthening Peace and social Cohesion
On access to justice and protecting human rights, UNDP continues its support for the rule of law and emphasizes gender justice as an approach for strengthening access to justice and security. This includes addressing sexual and gender-based violence, inheritance rights, speedy legal redress and representation, legal identity for women and access to quality and decentralized basic services. UNDP Sierra Leone partners with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), UN-Women, DfID, Irish Aid and the European Union to take to scale the successful initiatives through the justice and security group which UNDP coordinates.
On peacebuilding and social cohesion, UNDP Sierra Leone supports the establishment and/or strengthening infrastructures for peace for conflict prevention, mediation, and reconciliation; and support cross-border community security and development to improve security and trust between communities and security institutions in targeted border districts. UNDP Sierra Leone more than a mantra, collaborate with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the MRU Secretariat, CSOs and national security structures and the media.