Workshop on justice, security and national reconciliation convened in Liberia
On 16 and 17 February, with the joint support of the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the Government of Liberia convened a workshop to prepare a three-year joint programme on Justice, Security and National Reconciliation based on the Peacebuilding Commission Priority Plan.
Participants at the workshop included the Minister of Justice, an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of Liberia, the Minister of Internal Affairs, the Minister of Planning, the Minister of Finance, the Minister of Youth and Sport, the Senate Chair of the Committee on Peace and Security, several Deputy Ministers, and many representatives from civil society, UNMIL, UNDP and other members of the UN Country Team, including the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS), United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations Agency for Human Settlements (UN-HABITAT) and United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).
In addition, a technical advisory mission from Headquarters, co-led by UNDP and the Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO), and including the Peacebuilding Support Office and UNICEF, participated in the workshop and supported the drafting process for the joint programme. In remarks to open the workshop, Deputy Special Representative for Recovery and Governance Moustapha Soumaré emphasized the principles that should drive the joint programme: prioritize the priorities, be strategic and ensure long-term sustainabaility.
Over the course of the two-day workshop, participants broke into various working groups divided by thematic areas to identify the core outputs to be achieved over a three-year period. Within the framework of the PBC Priority Plan, the programming document is divided into specific sections – justice/security and reconciliation – with an overall chapeau that links the sections together. The programming document provides a tool to enable effective multi-actor and multi-donor programming in line with the Paris Principles on Aid Effectiveness and in the spirit of the United Nations Delivering as One agenda. The programme prioritizes local ownership and leadership and will help to set a new standard for coordination between the Government, the United Nations and other partners in line with the Accra Agenda for Action.
Following a request by the Government of Liberia, Liberia was placed on the agenda of the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) in September 2010. A Country Specific Configuration for Liberia was created, chaired by Prince Zeid Al Hussein of Jordan, and a Statement of Mutual Commitments (SMC) was adopted by the Government and the PBC in November 2010. The SMC informed the development of a Peacebuilding Priority Plan which will serve as the basis for the Peacebuilding Fund (PBF) interventions in Liberia and provide a roadmap for additional resource mobilization and advocacy by the PBC.
The SMC and Priority Plan identified three priorities – rule of law, security sector reform and national reconciliation. The development of a Joint Programme, based on the Priority Plan, under the leadership of the Government of Liberia and with the support of UNMIL, UNDP, DPKO and the UN Country Team represents the commitment to Delivering as One and taking coordination forward through comprehensive joint programming.