The Consequences of Women's Marginalization and Exclusion from Peace Processes on Sustainable Peacebuilding in Africa : An Examination of the Sierra Leone case <Article>
JIDC_17-1_31.pdf 887 KB
Mbayo, Alex Sivalie
Although there has been repeated calls by the international community backed up by UN resolutions (1325, 1820, etc.) for the total involvement of women in peace and peacebuilding processes in lieu of lessons learnt, these calls are yet to yield much, much dividend as majority of grass root women still continue to be absent at formal peace negotiation tables; especially in Africa. The grass root women of Sierra Leone, despite their tremendous and relentless efforts and contributions (e.g. organizing matches, sending delegates to meet with various conflicting parties, and rallying for peace both in the communities and at the national level) to ending the civil carnage in Sierra Leone, were bolted out when it came to the final deliberations at Lome, the capital of Togo, where the decision on how the governance arrangements could be made that was to be a fairly representation of the wishes and aspirations of all stake holders in the Sierra Leone society, an action that completely rendered the process gender insensitive. This article emphatically argues that the exclusion of women from the formal negotiation table, whose potentials are enormous and very essential for sustainable peacebuilding, is an anomaly that has and will continue to pose numerous challenges (misappropriation of resources, unaddressed root causes of war, political isolation, youth unemployment, increased gender-based violence, increased poverty and under development, etc.) that may render the ongoing post war peacebuilding process unsustainable; leading to a resurge of violence that will impact negatively on the realization of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) if frantic and deliberate efforts are not employed to correct the mishap.