SDG Open Day / Conference – Debates

UNIC, UNCG and RCO organized a series of conference – debates on the sideline of the «SDG village», with panelists sharing knowledge, experience and lessons on the 5Ps, with the following themes:

People and Prosperity: “Youth Empowerment within the SDGs context in Cameroon”, Planet: “Youths, commit for Environment and the SDGs”, Partnership: “Financing the 2030 agenda”, and Peace: “Imagine Peace”.

This also witnessed the official launching of the « Youth kamer volunteers for SDGs » platform; under the auspices of the UN Resident Coordinator, to better amplify advocacy of the SDGs in Cameroon. These conference-debates were centred on the indispensable implication of everybody, especially youths in achieving the SDGs.

Ms. Allegra Biocchi ; UN Resident Coordinator; reminded particpants that the 17 goals do not belong to the UN, but were rather signed by member countries, with Cameroon as a signatory. She further encouraged youths to commit to these goals and also say NO to all acts of corruption, and also take part in elections as voters.

Respective panelists underscored the fact that the United Nations accompanies the Cameroonian government and people in achieving a sustainable development which leaves no one behind for peace, stability, governance and democracy. Highly emphasised was the fact that a minimum sum of 10 billion FCFA were needed annually for the implementation of these goals in Cameroon. 

The three days SDG open door campaign buikt momentum and public understanding around the 17 goals for Sustainable Development and the 2030 development agenda.

SDG Open Day / Exposition at the SDG Village

UNIC, UNCG and RCO organized a three-days awareness and advocacy campaign; «SDG village», which brought together UN Agencies, Civil Society Organisations, to share information and knowledge on the SDGs with the public.

Information in respective stands comprised SDG branded gadget such as; roll-ups (kakemonos), posters, brochures, mystery wheel, ring, reports, newsletter, flyers, pins, mugs, t-shirts, pens, cubes, etc. The village was officially opened by Mr. Jacques Boyer UNICEF/UNCG Chair, and Ms Siti Batoul Oussein (UNFPA).

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Secretary-General’s remarks on International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women

[Watch the video on webtv.un.org]

I am very pleased to be with you to discuss this essential topic.
Violence against women and girls is a global pandemic. It is a moral affront to all women and girls and to us all, a mark of shame on all our societies, and a major obstacle to inclusive, equitable and sustainable development.
At its core, violence against women and girls in all its forms is the manifestation of a profound lack of respect – a failure by men to recognize the inherent equality and dignity of women.
It is an issue of fundamental human rights. The violence can take many forms – from domestic violence to trafficking, from sexual violence in conflict to child marriage, genital mutilation and femicide. It is an issue that harms the individual but also has far-reaching consequences for families and for society.
Violence experienced as a child is linked to vulnerability and violence later in life. Other consequences include long-term physical and mental health impacts and costs to individuals and society in services and lost employment days.
This is also a deeply political issue. Violence against women is tied to broader issues of power and control in our societies. We live in a male-dominated world. Women are made vulnerable to violence through the multiple ways in which we keep them unequal.
When family laws which govern inheritance, custody and divorce discriminate against women, or when societies narrow women’s access to financial resources and credit, they impede a woman’s ability to leave abusive situations.
When institutions fail to believe victims, allow impunity, or neglect to put in place policies of protection, they send a strong signal that condones and enables violence. In the past year we have seen growing attention to one manifestation of this violence.
Sexual harassment is experienced by almost all women at some point in their lives.
No space is immune.
It is rampant across institutions, private and public, including our very own. This is by no means a new issue, but the increasing public disclosure by women from all regions and all walks of life is bringing the magnitude of the problem to light. This effort to uncover society’s shame is also showing the galvanizing power of women’s movements to drive the action and awareness needed to eliminate harassment and violence everywhere.
This year, the global United Nations UNiTE campaign to end violence against women and girls is highlighting our support for survivors and advocates under the theme ‘Orange the World: #HearMeToo’.
With orange as the unifying colour of solidarity, the #HearMeToo hashtag is designed to send a clear message: violence against women and girls must end now, and we all have a role to play. We need to do more to support victims and hold perpetrators accountable.
But, beyond that, it is imperative that we – as societies — undertake the challenging work of transforming the structures and cultures that allow sexual harassment and other forms of gender-based violence to happen in the first place.
These include addressing the gender imbalances within our own institutions. This is why we have adopted a UN system-wide gender parity strategy. We have achieved parity in the senior management group and we are well on track to reach gender parity in senior leadership by 2021, and across the board by 2028.
The UN has also reaffirmed its zero-tolerance policy for sexual harassment and assault committed by staff and UN partners. We have recruited specialized investigators on sexual harassment, instituted fast-track procedures for addressing complaints and initiated a 24/7 helpline for victims.
I also remain committed to ending all forms of sexual exploitation and abuse by peacekeepers and UN staff in the field – one of the first initiatives I took when I assumed office.
Nearly 100 Member States that support UN operations on the ground have now signed voluntary compacts with us to tackle the issue, and I call on others to join them, fully assuming their responsibilities, in training, but also in ending impunity.
Further afield, we are continuing to invest in life-changing initiatives for millions of women and girls worldwide through the UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women. This Fund focuses on preventing violence, implementing laws and policies and improving access to vital services for survivors.
With more than 460 programmes in 139 countries and territories over the past two decades, the UN Trust Fund is making a difference. In particular, it is investing in women’s civil society organizations, one of the most important and effective investments we can make.
The UN is also working to deliver on a comprehensive, multi-stakeholder, innovative initiative to end all forms of violence against women and girls by 2030, in line with the Sustainable Development Goals.

The 500-million-euro EU-UN Spotlight Initiative is an important step forward in this direction. As the largest-ever single investment in eradicating violence against women and girls worldwide, this initial contribution will address the rights and needs of women and girls across 25 countries and five regions.

It will empower survivors and advocates to share their stories and become agents of change in their homes, communities and countries. A significant portion of the Spotlight’s initial investment will also go to civil society actors, including those that are reaching people often neglected by traditional aid efforts.
But even though this initial investment is significant, it is small given the scale of the need.
It should be seen as seed funding for a global movement in which we must play a role.
It is that global movement that we celebrate today, as we look forward to the coming 16 days devoted to ending gender-based violence. Not until the half of our population represented by women and girls can live free of fear, violence and everyday insecurity, can we truly say we live in a fair and equal world.

Thank you very much.

16 days of activism 2018

From 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, to 10 December, Human Rights Day, the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence Campaign is a time to galvanize action to end violence against women and girls around the world. The international campaign originated from the first Women’s Global Leadership Institute coordinated by the Center for Women’s Global Leadership in 1991.

Orange the World: #HearMeToo, end violence against women and girls

For far too long, impunity, silence and stigma have allowed violence against women to escalate to pandemic proportions—one in three women worldwide experience gender-based violence.

The time for change is here and now.

In recent years, the voices of survivors and activists, through campaigns such as #MeToo, #TimesUp, #Niunamenos, #NotOneMore, #BalanceTonPorc and others, have reached a crescendo that cannot be silenced any more. Advocates understand that while the names and contexts may differ across geographic locations, women and girls everywhere are experiencing extensive abuse and their stories need to be brought to light.

This is why the UNiTE Campaign’s global advocacy theme this year is: Orange the World: #HearMeToo

Under the theme Orange the World: #HearMeToo, the UNiTE partners are encouraged to host events with local, national, regional and global women’s movements, survivor advocates and women human rights defenders and create opportunities for dialogue between activists, policy-makers and the public. As in previous years, the colour orange will be a key theme unifying all activities, with buildings and landmarks lit and decorated in orange to bring global attention to the initiative.

Join us! Share your photos, messages and videos showing how you are participating in the campaign at facebook.com/SayNO.UNiTE and twitter.com/SayNO_UNiTE using #orangetheworld and #HearMeToo. For more information about Orange the World: #HearMeToo, see this year’s Concept Note.

Save the date for the UN official commemoration of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

L’ONU condamne la recrudescence des violences au Cameroun

HCR /Elizabeth Mpimbaza
Des familles camerounaises ont trouvé refuge à Utanga, Obanliku, au Nigéria, après avoir fui l’insécurité dans les régions anglophones du Cameroun. Photo HCR/Elizabeth Mpimbaza

20 novembre 2018

Le Haut-Commissariat des Nations Unies aux droits de l’homme condamne la recrudescence de la violence dans les régions du sud-ouest et du nord-ouest du Cameroun.

« Nous condamnons fermement les violations des droits de l’homme et les exactions commises contre les populations des régions du nord-ouest et du sud-ouest du Cameroun », a déclaré Ravina Shamdasani, porte-parole du Haut-Commissariat, lors d’une point de presse organisé mardi à Genève.

« Nous sommes profondément préoccupés par la recrudescence de la violence dans les régions du sud-ouest et du nord-ouest du Cameroun, car nous continuons de recevoir des informations faisant état d’enlèvements et d’assassinats par des groupes armés, ainsi que d’exécutions extrajudiciaires par les forces armées de l’État », a-t-elle ajouté.

Nous condamnons fermement les violations des droits de l’homme et les exactions commises contre les populations – Ravina Shamdasani, porte-parole du Haut-Commissariat

Ravina Shamdasani a fait valoir qu’outre l’enlèvement très médiatisé et la libération ultérieure de 78 étudiants et de trois membres du personnel d’une école secondaire presbytérienne de Bamenda, dans le nord-ouest du pays, le Haut-Commissariat reçoit régulièrement des informations faisant état d’enlèvements, qui auraient été commis par des groupes sécessionnistes armés.

Au cours des deux dernières semaines, le Bureau des droits de l’homme indique avoir reçu des informations faisant état d’enlèvements de huit élèves et d’un responsable d’école à Kumba, dans le sud-ouest du pays, et d’au moins 13 religieuses près de la localité de Bamessing, dans le nord-ouest du pays.

« Ils ont tous été libérés par la suite, après que des parents ont payé des rançons et que le diocèse catholique de Kumba est intervenu », a précisé la porte-parole.

Demande réitérée d’une mission d’évaluation

Le Haut-Commissariat réitère sa volonté de travailler avec le gouvernement du Cameroun, y compris par le biais d’une mission d’évaluation dans les régions du nord-ouest et du sud-ouest du pays.

« Cela nous permettra de pouvoir examiner directement la situation des droits de l’homme et de discuter avec le gouvernement en conséquence des moyens de remédier à la situation », a dit la porte-parole.

« Nous exhortons le gouvernement à respecter et à protéger les droits de tous, à donner suite aux griefs de longue date des communautés de ces régions, y compris par le dialogue, à enquêter rapidement sur tous les cas de violations impliquant apparemment ses forces de sécurité et de défense, et à en tenir les auteurs responsables », a-t-elle ajouté.

Ravina Shamdasani a également indiqué que ces derniers mois, les forces armées camerounaises auraient procédé à plusieurs exécutions extrajudiciaires dans les régions du nord-ouest et du sud-ouest.

La population de ces régions vit dans la peur et se trouve dans l’impossibilité d’accéder à ses droits fondamentaux – Ravina Shamdasani, porte-parole du HCDH

« Le 20 octobre, dans le village de Rom, dans le nord-ouest de Nwa, les forces de sécurité auraient tué quatre villageois lors d’un affrontement avec des groupes armés sécessionnistes, tandis que le 24 septembre, deux hommes soupçonnés d’être des combattants sécessionnistes auraient été tués sur place », a-t-elle affirmé, ajoutant qu’il y avait eu de nombreux rapports de ce type au cours des mois précédents.

« Nous exhortons toutes les parties à s’abstenir d’actes de violence qui, depuis plus d’un an, font que la population de ces régions vit dans la peur et se trouve dans l’impossibilité d’accéder à ses droits fondamentaux », a-t-elle affirmé.

La porte-parole a également mentionné le fait que son Bureau a reçu des informations selon lesquelles des groupes sécessionnistes armés auraient attaqué des écoles et détruit des bâtiments d’école, ce qui, ajouté aux inquiétants enlèvements, a empêché de nombreux enfants d’exercer leur droit à l’éducation depuis le début des violences en octobre dernier. Des informations font également état d’enlèvements et de meurtres de policiers et d’autorités administratives.

Ce qui avait commencé comme des manifestations en octobre 2016 dans les régions du nord-ouest et du sud-ouest contre la discrimination structurelle a dégénéré en violence en 2017, et la situation s’est considérablement aggravée depuis. Les violences ont entraîné des déplacements internes massifs : au moins 436.000 personnes seraient déplacées, alors que plus de 30.000 se sont réfugiées au Nigéria depuis septembre dernier.

Campagne : Mobilisez-vous #EnBleuPourChaqueEnfant

A l’occasion de la Journée Internationale de l’Enfant le 20 novembre l’UNICEF a lancé une campagne sur les réseaux sociaux. L’UNICEF Cameroun  nous invite à signer la pétition en ligne en faveur des droits de l’enfant.

On the occasion of the World Children Day on November 20th, UNICEF launched a campaign on social networks. UNICEF Cameroon invites us to sign the online petition in favor of Child Rights .

Ci-dessous le lien / Please use the link below:

https://www.unicef.org/fr/journee-mondiale-enfance

Sports for Achieving the SDGs in Cameroon

Saturday the 27th October was set aside to highlight Sports for Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals in Cameroon, as part of the 73rd United Nations day in Cameroon.

sportswalk by men, women and children in the presence of the UN Resident Coordinator, Minister Abena Ondoua of Women’s Empowerment and the Family, Ambassadors, Mr. Achille Basiliken; Secretary General-MINREX among other dignitaries took place along major streets in Yaounde. Participants walked through the streets of Obili, Melen and Ngoa-ekelle to the military stadium for the Sustainable Development Goals. This parade was guided by the security forces and the Cameroon Red Cross. caught the attention of many curious onlookers whereby some immediately joined the crew.

A semi-tournament pitting teams from the United Nations, MINREX, Diplomatic Corps and Civil Society was also on schedule. Ms Allegra Baiocchi; UN Resident Coordinator gave the kickoff of the opening match between the ladies of MINREX and the UN system.

The matches were hotly contested, in a spirit of fair play and for the good of the game and SDGs. 

Official Ceremony for UN Day 2018

The 24 October UN Day celebration in Cameroon took place at Ministry of External Relations (MINREX) on the theme: “Energy, key driver to Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Cameroon”.

Ms. Allegra Baiocchi; UN Resident Coordinator in Cameroon stressed on mutual empowerment and support towards achieving the SDGs, appealed that“we must fight poverty, inequality” and thanked the people and government of Cameroon for their faithful cooperation with the United Nations.

She further read the UNSG message on the occasion, in which Mr. Antonio Guterres urged all of us not to give up, despite the challenges;hardship, inequality, increasing rates of conflicts, extreme poverty in the World.

H.E Adoum Gargoum; Minister Delegate at the Ministry of External Relations in charge of cooperation with the Islamic World also stressed the importance of working in synergy to build a better world. Participants also watched a video projection on the UN – Cameroon cooperation in achieving the SDGs.