Gender and Security in Africa

By: Dr. Awino Okech

This is the second in a series of three African Women’s Development Fund primers entitled Feminist Perspectives on Governance, Peace and Security. The primers are intended to:
1. Offer a review of the major debates on women, governance, peace and security in Africa.
2. Review and analyse women’s movements’ interventions in governance, peace and security.
3. Offer a set of policy and advocacy priorities based on political and practical realities.
4. Benefit women’s rights activists, organisations and people in government at the front line of local and national mobilisation initiatives seeking to enhance women’s leadership.
5. Assist in building alliances and structuring support across various institutions working towards enhancing women’s political participation.

This primer reflects on women’s peace activism and gendered security in Africa. It explores the following interlinked questions: What factors drive women’s peace activism? Who are the major actors that women peace activists target? What are the key lessons that can be drawn from these interactions? This primer begins by tracing the evolution of debates and activism on gender and violence.

Secondly, it highlights national, regional and international policy frameworks that have emerged out of this activism. Finally, the primer draws on a few peace building initiatives led by women’s rights actors across the continent. We hope the lessons highlighted here offer a basis for building alliances and structuring support across various institutions working to enhance women’s peace activism.

Primer Two Gender & Security in Africa