The Government of Canada has pledged cooperation and support to the African First Ladies Peace Mission, AFLPM, in pursuit of the Mission’s peacebuilding efforts on the African continent.
This was the outcome of the virtual meeting between the Special Assistant to the President of Nigeria on AFLPM, Dr. Mairo Al-Makura, on the Mission’s side, and the Canadian Minister of International Development, Karina Gould, and the Canadian Ambassador for Women, Peace and Security, Jacqueline O’Neill, held July 16
Speaking during the meeting, Gould and O’Neill commended the valuable efforts of the AFLPM, which they acknowledged, had been working relentlessly on peacebuilding initiatives within Africa.
The Canadian officials, therefore, expressed the interest of the Government of Canada in deepening its cooperation with the AFLPM in promoting women, peace, and security in Africa.
In her opening remarks, Dr. Al Makura, highlighted women’s role in peacebuilding, the systemic barriers often faced by women in conflict settings and how Canada could further support the goals of the AFLPM on the continent.
“Through the years, the AFLPM has leveraged its privilege and access to power to foster diplomatic and political relationship towards achieving peace, with a particular focus on the needs of the women and children of Africa.
“With the 47 member-states making up the mission well utilised as vehicles to promote peacebuilding and conflict resolution through feminist lens, we have the unique ability to quickly mobilise and advocate for change.
“Also, the Peace Mission is embarking on Advocacy for women on the need to take COVID-19 vaccines alongside their families” Dr. Mairo Al-Makura stated.
She emphasised the need for Canada and AFLPM to establish ways to deepen relationship and mobilise resources for the AFLPM secretariat to advance the women, peace and security agenda, gender equality, and the broader Sustainable Development Goals objectives on the African continent.
The Peace Mission and the Government of Canada also discussed several regional peace, security and humanitarian issues and the need to resolve conflicts through political dialogue and increased women’s participation in conflict-prevention efforts.
Meanwhile, the African First Ladies Peace Mission was an outcome of the 1995 Fourth World Conference on women in Beijing, China, where the initiative was taken to establish the African First Ladies Forum by African wives of African Heads of State/Presidents who came together as ambassadors of peace during the conference.