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Global south development Magazine (July 2012 ) Global south development Magazine (July 2012 ) Document Transcript

  • GLOBAL SOUTH#1 0, July 201 2, A development quarterly Development MagazineISSN: 1 799-0769, www.silcreation.orgWomen oftheRevolution In the Aftermath of the Arab Spring
  • Letter to the editorThe teamGlobal South Development Magazine is a quarterly magazine Less vulgar, more news how farmers in Argentina have changed from cattlepublished by Silver Lining Creation, Finland. The magazine covers a development keeping to soya farming andwide range of developmental issues primarily of the developingworld and is an initiative of freelance writers and development news! these are the kind of development stories that willactivists from different parts of the world. I had a concern on the Argentine story. I felt it was resonatepresume. in the globe, I elsewhereEditor-in-Chief not in good taste for a I also found some of theManoj Kr Bhusal development magazine. While almost nude pictures from themanoj.bhusal@silcreation.org we all welcome the growth of gay parade quite out of taste the movement in Argentina, I for the GSDM content. Please would have preferred to see shield us from such in theAssistant Editor from the story, how the future.Ioulia Fenton developments in the gender Howver, all in all, congrats issues have helped improve on your good work!Editorial Assistants governance and delivery of Irene N. MwangiCarolynn Look basic rights in Argentina.Dinesh Poudel I have heard on the BBC Nairobi, KenyaSuraj Chand Congo crisis,Regional EditorsLingson Adam (East Africa) greed and thenKhalid Hussain (South Asia)Noah Marwil (Latin America) war and peaceCatriona Knapman (The Middle East) It is most unfortunateSpecial Correspondents that Congo (DRC) hasMary Namusoke (Women’s issues in Africa)Roxanne Irani (Global environmental issues) to be assessed along theSandeep Srivastava (Climate change) lines of “War &Aliza Amlani (Global Health) Peace”.Deanna Morris (Livelihood & Global Economic Affairs) Can exploitation andAparna S Patankar (Global Education)Scott Ruddick (Development Aid & Conflict States) orchestrated rebellionsHriday Sarma (South-to-South Development Cooperation) not be exchanged forIrene Nyambura Mwangi (Development & Democracy in Africa) prudent businessDebora Di Dio (Food Soverignty and Rural Livelihoods) practice, good governance andCountry Correspondents peacefull developmentVictoria Lucy Peel Yates (Argentina) of the middle and lower Rwanda,Tithe Farhana (Bangladesh) social society in the DRC? Uganda,Zimbabwe and theDr. Lykke E. Andersen (Bolivia)Marita Haug (Brazil) Is our international greed DR Congo so big that weJames Belgrave (Burundi) for taking as much as cannot overcome andGareth Mace (Cambodia) possible as cheaply as manage Africa prudently?Meerim Shakirova (Central Asia) possible from places like A.J. MeintjesFady Salah (Egypt)Emily Cavan Lynch (DR Congo)Dr.P.V.Ravichandiran (India) More innovative see the problems, takeAlphonce Gari (Kenya) stories needed! photos of malnaurishedSamuel Adikpe (Nigeria)Ricardo Morel (Peru) kids and upload onMohamud Hassan (Somalia) I am a regular reader of facebook wantshare with andMoses C Masami (Tanzania)Kimbowa Richard (Uganda) your magazine and most friends. I my experience and share to go thereJasen Mphepo (Zimbabwe) of the issues presented and knowledge and are interesting. However, innovative ideas that IGuest contributors for this issue as a developmentSarah Ferst publication, it would be havethrough magazines and learned at university great if you could also like yours. Published By focus on positive Silver Lining Creation RY-Finland technological There is a lot of Email: globalsouth@silcreatioin.org negativity, criticisms and developments that can frustration going on in the info@silcreation.org http://www.silcreation.org help the developing world, so maybe its time ISSN 1799-0769 world. to spread some hope and Subscribe free to Global South Development Im thinking of Magazine at www.silcreation.org spending a few months in positivity stories. ideas and and innovative www.gsdmagazine.org Africa as an intern and Paul when I go there, I dont Berlin, Germany want to go there just to
  • Contents Global South Development Magazine, Founded in 2010 July 201 2 ISSUE 1 0 WWW.SILCREATION.ORGWomen in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya played a prominent role in bringing down entrenched dictatorships, however, there arefears that previous gains made by women might be reversed due to rising social conservatism and religious fundamentalism inthe post-revolutionary scenario.
  • Global South In the FrameIn April 2012 UN High Commissioner for Refugees, António Guterres, announced the appointment ofAngelina Jolie as his Special Envoy. Ms Jolie has takenpart in more than 40 field visits for UNHCR during her ten years of time as a goodwill ambassador. Photo: UNHCR/ J.TannerRice Farmers at Work in Bhutan: Farmers thresh their rice harvest in a field near Punakha, Bhutan. Photo: UN Multimedia Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 4
  • News Analysis Global SouthSri Lanka - not enough action on impunity "there has been some progress in economic development and resettlement in the northern conflict zone, but many problems still exist"COLOMBO, July 2012 - Sri Lankan “subversive” activity; an independent advisory District, said Tamil people were exhausted byparliamentarians in favour of acting on the committee to examine the detention and arrest of conflict and would like to find normalcy ratherrecommendations in a report into the final stages persons in custody to address concerns about than more politics. “These political games haveof the country’s civil war by the Lessons Learnt indefinite detention without due process under an pushed the country through 30 years of conflict. Iand Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) are anti-terrorist law; and addressing grievances from hope this will not be repeated.”slowly gaining ground over those who are not, minority communities, including Muslims in the The executive director of the National Peacesays a presidential peace process adviser. north and Tamils. Council, Jehan Perera, told IRIN, “While the The government’s initial reaction to the LLRC Tasks government asserts that it is implementing therecommendations was positive, presidential Since then there has been some progress in recommendations, it has not been specific as toadviser and parliamentarian Rajiva Wijesinha told economic development and resettlement in the what it is implementing,” and progress has beenIRIN, but others saw the report, released just over northern conflict zone, but many problems still very limited so far.six months ago, as a call for regime change and exist, said Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu, executive The government does not seem keen onwere “highly critical”. director of the Centre for Policy Alternatives, a Sri implementing governance recommendations that “However I now think we have equilibrium Lankan think-tank. would interfere with the highly “personalized”again, and the more positive forces in government “Progress also made with the rehabilitation of powers of current leaders, he added.seem likely to go ahead [with implementing the LTTE [Liberation Tigers ofTamil Eelam, therecommendations],” Wijesinha said, noting that separatist movement] cadres, although there are “Resistance”many of the LLRC recommendations fell within reports that even after being released they arethe existing framework of the Ministry of Disaster being questioned and face issues with regard to re- resistance to implementing inclined to justify its The government is also the LLRCManagement and Human Rights. integration in the community,” said recommendations on the grounds that the “We have wasted far too much time in Saravanamuttu.defending ourselves against gratuitous attacks, Not enough has been done to reach a political international community Perera said. in Sri Lankas internal affairs,” is interferingwhen a simple general appreciation of the LLRC settlement between the sometimes antagonistic The ruling government has largely discreditedwould have taken us forward more quickly. But we ethnic groups ofTamils and Sinhalese, reports of human rights abuses from internationalhave to realize that other countries play games in demilitarizing the north, punishing impunity, and NGOs.terms of their own interests, and we have to be improving governance - such as putting in place The LLRC recommendations included asensible enough to ignore these and move forward legislation that ensures the right to information - mourning period prior to the country’sin the interests of pluralism and peace,” he said. and establishing independent commissions to independence day celebrations on 4 February toSri Lanka’s president Mahinda Rajapaksa formed investigate the conflict, Saravanamuttu noted. express solidarity and sympathy with conflictthe commission in May 2010 to investigate the The LLRC called for independentfinal period of a decades-long civil war between investigations into the UK’s Channel 4 television victims, but nothing took place, said Ruki Fernando of the Christian Alliance for Socialthe government and separatist rebels from the broadcasts in 2011 and 2012, which examined Action, a local NGO. Rather, pro-Sinhalese victoryTamil ethnic group. After an 18-month inquiry, the alleged war crimes, and also into civilian parades rolled out.commission submitted its findings to parliament massacres spanning a decade in the north’son 16 December 2011. Trincomalee District, including the 2006 murder of issues needing urgent attention,number of critical Fernando said there were a including the Human rights groups questioned the group’s 17 workers of the French NGO, Action Againstimpartiality and along with the UN Secretary- Hunger. Saravanamuttu said these investigations continued existence controllednumberLankan security zones” still of a large by Sri of “highGenerals Panel of Experts on Accountability should start immediately.called for an independent inquiry, which the Thavarajah Rasiah, 63, in Jaffna District in the military forces in the north, which prevent largegovernment rejected. northern Sri Lanka, told IRIN that residents in the numbers of people returning to their places of origin. Among dozens of recommendations, the LLRC former war zone have been promised much, but Other matters needing urgent attention werecalled for a special commissioner to investigate seen little. “Lot of talking and not much alleged attacks on the media, reports of religiousalleged disappearances and criminal proceedings; improvements”. of talking and not much harassment, issues of language discrimination, andan amendment to the Registration of Deaths Act, improvements”. . “Lot of talking and not much cases of abuse of personal freedoms, including thewhich allows a next of kin to apply for a death improvements”. abuse of civil liberties and human rights.(IRIN)certificate if a person is missing due to Selva Sivaguru, 43, in neighbouring Mannar Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 5
  • News Analysis Global SouthAid must work Worries over new Rise in seabetter for Egyptian policy on level cantAfghans in the medicinesnext decade be stopped, CAIRO, July 201 2 - A decision by the Egyptian Health Ministry to peg local medicine prices to international ones is causing concern. “This is a catastrophic decision,” Karima Al Hefnawy, a member of scientists say Rising sea levels cannot be stopped over the local NGO the Independent Right to Health next several hundred years, even if deep emissions Committee, told IRIN. “Egypt is a low-income cuts lower global average temperatures, but they country, which means that linking local can be slowed down, climate scientists said in a medicine prices with international ones will study on Sunday. cause suffering to the poor.” A lot of climate research shows that rising Only about 30 percent of Egyptians have greenhouse gas emissions are responsible for health insurance, according to a recent increasing global average surface temperatures by estimate by the NGO. Hitherto, medicine about 0.17 degrees Celsius a decade from 1980-July 2012, Development gains made in prices were set by the ministry, sometimes at 2010 and for a sea level rise of about 2.3mm a yearAfghanistan over the last decade are in danger of much lower prices than the manufacturing from 2005-2010 as ice caps and glaciers melt.being thrown away if levels of aid fall away in cost, leading some suppliers to go out of Rising sea levels threaten about a tenth of theconjunction with the withdrawal of international business. worlds population who live in low-lying areas andtroops in 2014, Oxfam warned. islands which are at risk of flooding, including the Ahead of a vital donor conference in Tokyo this Caribbean, Maldives and Asia-Pacific islandmonth, Oxfam is calling on governments groups.represented at the summit to maintain levels of aid More than 180 countries are negotiating a newto the country and ensure this aid reaches the global climate pact which will come into force byAfghan men, women and children who need it 2020 and force all nations to cut emissions to limitmost. warming to below 2 degrees Celsius this century The agency is warning that decisions about aid - a level scientists say is the minimum required tolevels and spending come at a critical time for avert catastrophic effects.Afghanistan, the country’s single biggest donor, But even if the most ambitious emissions cutsthe USA, having already dramatically cut are made, it might not be enough to stop sea levelsdevelopment aid by nearly half in 2011, from Another local NGO, The Medical$4.1bn to $2.5bn. Association, says of the US$1 0 billion spent rising due to the thermal expansion of sea water, The withdrawal of international combat forces on health last year, only about a third came said scientists at the United States National Centreby the end of 2014 is likely to hit the already weak from the government. The government has for Atmospheric Research, U.S. researchAfghan economy even harder with 97 percent of allocated $4 billion, or 4.8 percent of Egypt’s organisation Climate Central and Centre forthe country’s gross domestic product related to the total budget in fiscal year 201 2-201 3, to the Australian Weather and Climate Research ininternational community’s presence. The World health sector. This, experts say, means that Melbourne.Bank has estimated that aid to Afghanistan could individuals will continue to foot most of the "Even with aggressive mitigation measures thatdrop by as much as 90 per cent by 2025. health bill in the new fiscal year. limit global warming to less than 2 degrees above Oxfam has urged donors to follow the example Chairman of the Health Ministry’s pre-industrial values by 2100, and with decreasesof countries such as the UK, Germany and medicine sector Mohsen Abdelaleem rejected of global temperature in the 22nd and 23rdAustralia, who have pledged to maintain or even the concerns, saying the higher prices would centuries ... sea level continues to rise after 2100,"increase aid levels in the coming years - or see the allow more pharmaceutical companies to stay they said in the journal Nature Climate Change.gains that have been made undermined or even in business, making medicines more widely This is because as warmer temperaturesreversed. available.(IRIN) penetrate deep into the sea, the water warms and Almost $60 billion of aid has been given to expands as the heat mixes through different ocean regions.Afghanistan since 2001. Over that period lifeexpectancy in the country has risen dramatically UGANDA: New LGBTI Even if global average temperatures fall and the surface layer of the sea cools, heat would still befrom 47 to 62 years for men and 50 to 64 years forwomen, with basic health care now accessible in clinic faces fierce mixed down into the deeper layers of the ocean, causing continued rises in sea levels.more than 80 per cent of districts. There have alsobeen significant gains in education with more than government criticism If global average temperatures continue to rise, the melting of ice sheets and glaciers would only2.7 million girls enrolled in school compared to add to the problem.just a few thousand under the Taliban. However, July 201 2, Uganda, Gay rights activists have The scientists calculated that if the deepestAfghanistan remains one of the poorest countries opened Ugandas first clinic for lesbian, gay, emissions cuts were made and global temperaturesin the world. Far too much aid has been poorly bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) cooled to 0.83 degrees in 2100 - forecast based onspent and too often tied to military objectives or people in the capital, Kampala, where it will the 1986-2005 average - and 0.55 degrees by 2300,projects designed to win hearts and minds in the provide testing, counselling and treatment for the sea level rise due to thermal expansion wouldshort term, rather than supporting long-term HIV and other sexually transmitted infections. continue to increase - from 14.2cm in 2100 todevelopment goals. Despite the high level of HIV among MSM, 24.2cm in 2300. "Any significant cuts in support could have the government has not included the group in If the weakest emissions cuts were made,dire consequences on Afghan people and we its national strategy to fight HIV because temperatures could rise to 3.91 degrees Celsius incannot let this happen. While the past 11 years homosexual activity is illegal in Uganda. A bill 2100 and the sea level rise could increase tohave seen substantial progress, millions of before parliament seeks even more stringent 32.3cm, increasing to 139.4cm by 2300.Afghans still lack adequate healthcare, schools, punishments for people engaging in "Though sea-level rise cannot be stopped for atjobs, or law and order. A good hard look at the homosexual acts and those perceived to be least the next several hundred years, withway aid is spent in Afghanistan is long overdue. "promoting" homosexuality. aggressive mitigation it can be slowed down, andDonors need to work harder to address the needs The clinic was opened on 1 9 May 201 2 by this would buy time for adaptation measures to beof women and girls, involve local communities in Bishop Christopher Senyonjo - one of the adopted," the scientists added.development projects, increase anti-corruption countrys few religious leaders willing to The study is available atefforts, and ensure projects are designed to be speak for gay rights - and is managed by a www.nature.com/nclimate (Reporting by Ninasmart, fair and sustainable," said Oxfam’s Louise local gay rights lobby group, Ice Breakers Chestney; Editing by Pravin Char)Hancock, head of policy and advocacy in Uganda (IBU).Afghanistan.(SourceOxfam) Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 6
  • Press Freedom Global South Burundi, a country praised in recent years for its free and dynamic press and active civil society, is witnessing a worrying deterioration in media freedom.The shrinking space forpress freedoms in BurundiJAMES BELGRAVEGSDM BurundiBurundi, a country praised in recent years for precedent given that no journalist in Burundiits free and dynamic press and active civil has ever been convicted for such a crime’, andsociety, is witnessing a worrying deterioration the outcome has caused concern for bothin media freedom. Reporters Without Borders’ national and international human rightsannual Press Freedom Index reveals a startling activists.trend in this country located in the heart of the Following the Gatumba bar attack in 18th "harassment and theAfrican Great Lakes region: between 2008 and September 2011, in which more than 372011 Burundi slipped 36 places from 94th to people were killed when gunmen burst into a arbitrary arrest of journalists130th (of 178) in the global rankings for press bar and shot indiscriminately at the crowd (see have been on the rise, andfreedom. In recent years, harassment and the article in GSDM N.7), the governmentarbitrary arrest of journalists have been on the imposed a month long news blackout analyses by various expertsrise, and analyses by various experts and preventing the media from publishing, and NGOs point to aNGOs point to a situation which is only set to commenting or analyzing information relating situation which is only set toworsen this year as the space for press to the attack. The ban was broadly compliedfreedom in the country continues to diminish. with by local media, but set a dangerous worsen this year as the 2010 saw the arrest of several journalists, precedent given the lack of clear and reliable space f or press f reedom inmost notably Jean-Claude Kavumbagu, who, information surrounding the Gatumba attack.in July, was arrested for publishing an article Being a journalist in Burundi is now a the country continues toin which he questioned the state’s ability to hazardous profession which entails significant diminish"respond to a potential terrorist attack by the risks. A recent Human Rights Watch reportSomali Islamist militia Al-Shabaab (the (which was itself banned in the country),Burundian military presence in Somalia makes points out that the Gatumba attack took placethe country a target). He was detained for ten in the context of a broader pattern ofmonths pending trial and released in May intimidation and harassment of independent2011 having been found guilty of ‘threatening Burundian journalists’ and states that the newsthe national economy’. According to Human blackout may have amounted to a violation ofRights Watch, this sentence is a ‘negative freedom of expression. Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 7
  • Press Freedom Global SouthOn the 28th of November 2011 a journalist prosecutor’s office in 2011 for questioningworking for Radio France International (RFI) regarding the radio’s programmes. "The f undamental issue isand Bujumbura-based Bonesha FM, Hassan The media, however, is very active in that the Government ofRuvakuki, was arrested on charges of ‘acts of calling for press freedoms and the release ofterrorism’. He had conducted an interview arrested journalists, and on the 18th of June Burundi is highly sensitive towith a member of a rebel group in this year six of the biggest independent radio criticism, and the currentneighbouring Tanzania. On the 21th of June stations organized a media synergy through2012, he was sentenced to life imprisonment. which they simultaneously broadcast the same media crackdown is takingReporters Without Borders described the trial editorial message, calling on the Government place against a backdrop ofas a ‘politically orchestrated travesty’. to cease their harassment and unwarranted Later that month, in response to the arrest of journalists and to uphold its a deteriorating political anddifficult situation faced by journalists, four of constitutional obligations, respect the law and security situation in whichthe major independent radio stations asked the ensure that freedom of expression is the Government accusespublic to sound their car horns for 15 seconds guaranteed in Burundi.at 12:20pm to protest against political violence The fundamental issue is that the journalists of siding with theand the muzzling of journalists. Having Government of Burundi is highly sensitive to opposition and/or rebelwitnessed this protest first hand, I can confirm criticism, and the current media crackdown isthat it was met with popular support and those taking place against a backdrop of a movements andfifteen seconds were some of the noisiest I deteriorating political and security situation in consequently treats them ashave experienced in more than 18 months in which the Government accuses journalists ofBujumbura. siding with the opposition and/or rebel enemies" Both Human Rights Watch and Reporters movements and consequently treats them asWithout Borders agree that the government is enemies.openly hostile to independent media and both The Government would do well tolocal and international experts assert that remember the key role that the open and freejournalists who report on human rights abuses press and civil society in Burundi played inand on the political situation have been peacebuilding efforts following the end of thetargeted with repeated summons and threats of war in 2008, and ensure that such advances inarrest. Yet another example is that of the chief basic human rights are not undone in aneditor of Radio Publique Africaine, a leading attempt to silence their political opponents.independent radio station based in Bujumbura, (Note: Photos used in the text were taken bywho was summoned eight times to the public the author.) Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 8
  • Natural Resources Latin America RICARDO MOREL GSDM Peru“Conga [mining project] will go ahead with or preferring water over gold during his campaign wonwithout social license” – announced Peru´s Prime a large number of supporters and raised hope forMinister in early June, after more than a year of change among rural communities. "Af ter 21 years of neo-liberalintense disputes between the national government At that point, the Regional President of governments, lef t-leaningand the regional government over the viability of Cajamarca, Gregorio Santos, who publiclythe US$4.8 billion mining project in Cajamarca, supported Humala’s campaign, had a flexible leader Ollanta Humala tooknorthern Peru. The case of Conga project continues position towards mining, acknowledging theto dominate the national headlines while remaining economic benefits it brought to the region. The of f ice in July 2011 amidstindefinitely suspended with no clear indication of Conga mining project’s viability faced no major huge popular support. Hishow this conflict will be resolved. problems, however, the idyll did not last long. A In the past two decades the Peruvian economy series of errors committed by the Executive and the message of pref erring waterhas experienced continued economic growth. This mining company transformed Santos into their main over gold during hishas been boosted by the rise of the mining industry, opponent, making Conga the first litmus test forwhich comprises more than half of the national Humala’s left leaning government. campaign won a largeGDP. Paradoxically, this achievement has beenfollowed by a considerable increase of social The political scenario number of supporters andconflicts, mainly related to extractive industries, Peruvian law dictates that a mining project with raised hope f or changewhich operate in territories that serve as a source of an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA)livelihood and cultural meaning for local approved by the Ministry of Energy and Mines is among rural communities."communities. This dynamic has gradually de- legally viable. However, the legality of an approvedlegitimized the political system, diluted confidence EIA is not enough to put forward a project.in the central government, and created a Legitimacy needs to be upheld by all stakeholders,governance deficit. especially in a highly fragmented scenario where After 21 years of neo-liberal governments, left- the central government –which concentrates allleaning leader Ollanta Humala took office in July decision-making powers over mining policy– is2011 amidst huge popular support. His message of distanced from the local and regional governments,World Water Day Demonstration on Proposed Conga Gold Mine Site,Cajamarca Region, Peru © Diego Cupolo Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 9
  • Natural Resources Latin Americaas well as the civil society. This is particularly true Soon opposition supporters from all over thewhen mining activities occur in remote region began to mobilize. In the midst of intensecommunities where extractive industries tend to popular pressure, former Prime Minister and currentoperate. presidential spokesperson, Salomon Lerner, Regional and local governments lack capacity appeared in a press conference alongside "Conga, as a project, andand power to regulate activities that might raise Newmont’s Operations Vice-President to declare theconflict behaviours in their own territories. suspension of Conga’s activities. Having a high- Cajamarca, as a region,Consequently, all regional and local grievances ranking government official appear with a Newmontregarding mining operations travel directly to the could be a milestone incapital city of Lima. Even at the national level, it isExecutive on national television only served tothe Ministry of Energy and Mines –an institution increase distrust for the government. Peru’s history if the rightgenerally seen as biased towards the private sector– Opposition continued and, in response, the bridges are built"which has the final word when approving the government declared a state of emergency inviability of projects, without necessarily having to Cajamarca, mobilizing police forces and closelyconsult with other relevant Ministries regarding the watching opposition leaders. By the end of 2011,issues of environment or social development. the situation became unbearable. Prompting the "Mining companies need to resignation of Prime Minister, Lerner was replaced improve their strategy by by former Minister of Interior, Oscar Valdes.Brief chronology of the conflict: Succeeding Prime Minister Valdes called for an international prioritising theerrors technical assessment of Conga’s EIA viability. As Cajamarca, a traditional farming and the report was delivered in April 2011, President strengthening ofstockbreeding region, experienced the mining boom Humala introduced a series of new conditions to the relationships bef ore startingwhen Yanacocha –run mainly by US-based project, such as increasing labour and protectingNewmont Mining Corporation– started operations natural water sources. Yanacocha was not operations"over two decades ago. Newmont’s mining activities previously consulted on these changes, butin Yanacocha, the world’s second largest gold mine, eventually agreed to the new terms.have built up a negative reputation due to Still, since mid-June roadblocks have beenenvironmental disasters and a record of strong occurring in different parts of Cajamarca, generatingclashes with local communities. Despite this local shortage of food supply and other resources.(and even national) perception of the firm,Newmont decided to attach the Conga project to Lessons learnedYanacocha brand, thus transmitting Yanacocha’s Conga, as a project, and Cajamarca, as a region,stigmas to the yet-to-be-born Conga mine. could be a milestone in Peru’s history if the right In March 2011, Newmont announced in NewYork that not only Conga but also Quillish –another bridges are built. The Government could strengthenYanacocha-brand project suspended since 2004 due the decentralizationregional government in EIA participation to the process, giving moreto strong opposition– would start operations in processes, mining concessions, right to prior2016. This was later confirmed by PresidentHumala who, in October 2011, after returning from consultation, regional governments moregeneral, the idea is to get and wealth distribution. In involvedthe Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) by increasing their responsibilities and, thus,Conference in Hawaii, personally gave the green making them part of the national politicallight to the Conga project. The decision generated surprise among the local machinery. companies need to improve their strategy Miningpopulation, but particularly with Santos, who by prioritising the strengthening of relationshipstrusted his, friend-now-President, Humala and had before starting operations. Not only should thesenot been informed beforehand. Santos saw his efforts be focused on creating inroads with localpower undermined. As NGOs and defence fronts communities but also should concentrate onstarted mobilizing, Santos saw an opportunity togain political relevance by joining the assault. Later bringing local and regional governments, if dialogue NGOs, into the political fold. In essence, as well asthat month, the regional government of Cajamarca and transparency are not present across all fronts,turned radical by stating that the Newmont’s CEO history will repeat itself. Peru needs to addshould declare Conga unviable. legitimacy to legality and sustainability to viability. PHOTO CORNER Education in Tanzania massive Despite significant achievement through investment under the government’s Primary Education Development Plans (I&II) for over 8 years coupled with numerous interventions by NGOs both local and National, the state of education in some rural parts ofTanzania is still appalling. Learning outcomes not convincing and the learning-teaching environment is still far from being improved. Facing the situation like the pictured one at Mwamagembe Primary school in Kishapu district, Shinyanga region in Tanzania, one may wish to pause and ask a number of questions: what is wrong? Have, as a country and global community been able to identify let alone address the root cause of the education challenges? Even more importantly, how do we get out of such alarming learning environment hampering quality education for all? Pictured is Oxfam’s Education Programme Officer, Mary Soko who visited the school to monitor progress of the WASH facilities that Oxfam sponsored. Photo by Lingson Adam/ GSDM West Africa Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 1 0
  • Cover Story Women of the Revolution Women ofthe Revolution! In the Aftermath of the Arab Spring Women in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya played a prominent role in bringing down entrenched dictatorships, however, there are fears that previous gains made by women might be reversed due to rising social conservatism and religious fundamentalism in the post- revolutionary scenario. Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 11
  • Cover Story Women of the Revolution Photo: Gigi Ibrahim After 18 days of angry protests in front of Sanaa University, calling forCairos Tahrir Square, president Hosni Yemens President, Ali Abdullah Saleh, toMubarak resigned on February 11, ending step down. Karman became an30 years of autocratic rule. Hundreds of international face of peaceful revolutionthousands of people gathered and chanted and was awarded the 2011 Nobel Peaceslogans against the regime until it finally Prize.toppled. Obviously, anger, frustration and While Asmaa Mahfouz of Egypt anda deep rooted desire for change fueled the Tawakel Karman ofYemen were activelyrevolution, but many believe it was organizing protests and participating inAsmaa Mahfouzs YouTube video that did them directly, the Tunisian Lina Benthe magic and compelled people to turn Mhenni took a different approach.up to Tahrir Square and oppose Through a blog, Mhenni reported thedictatorship. protests throughout Tunisia, at times The 26 year old university student becoming the only source of information "The world hasnt forgottonmade a video and posted on YouTube to activists within Tunisia and also to the womens contribution in theannouncing her intention to go to the outside world. Arab Uprisings, but thesquare on 25 January, she challenged These three names mentioned here are danger is that they are beingEgyptians to take to the street, saying, If just representative examples of hundredsyou think yourself a man, come with me of thousands of women that made the forgotten in their own lands byon 25 January. Whoever says women Arab Uprising possible. Through satellite their own regimes"shouldn’t go to protests because they will television and on social networking sitesget beaten, let him have some honor and we saw how vigorously these womenmanhood and come with me on 25 organized themselves and bravelyJanuary. Whoever says it is not worth it challenged tyranny and dictatorship. Thebecause there will only be a handful of world hasnt certainly forgotten that. Butpeople, I want to tell him, You are the the danger is that due to a surprising risereason behind this, and you are a traitor, of conservatism and fundamentaljust like the president or any security cop religious ideologies after the revolutionswho beats us in the streets. in the region, women might be forgotten In Yemen, another woman, Tawakel and oppressed in their own lands, by theKarman, led the pro-democracy regimes that are built on the samecampaigns, camping out for months in womens sweat, blood and toil. Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 1 2
  • Cover Story Women of the Revolution Photo by Clinton VerleyTawakel Karman, 33, Yemen Photo: David Sasaki Mother of the Revolution Lina Ben Mhenni, 29, Tunisia Asmaa Mahfouz, 27, Egypt The Revolutionary Blogger Tawakel Karman became the the woman who organized Egyptsinternational public face of the 2011 historic demonstrations During the rule of former TunisianYemeni uprising that is part of the Asmaa Mahfouz is an Egyptian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, LinaArab Spring uprisings. She has been activist and one of the founders of Mhenni was one of the few bloggers tocalled by Yemenis the "Iron Woman" the April 6 Youth Movement. She has blog using her real name rather thanand "Mother of the Revolution. She been credited by journalist Mona adopting a pseudonym to protect heris a co-recipient of the 2011 Nobel Eltahawy and others with helping to identity. Her blog, as well as herPeace Prize, becoming the first Facebook and Twitter accounts, were spark mass uprising through her censored under the Ben Ali regime.Yemeni, the first Arab woman, and video blog posted one week before Mhenni began posting photos and videothe second Muslim woman to win a the start of the 2011 Egyptian of protests of those injured throughoutNobel Prize and the youngest Nobel revolution where she said, Ifyou Tunisia. In an effort to make thePeace Laureate to date. think yourselfa man, come with me government responsible for its actions Karman is a Yemeni journalist, on 25 January. Whoever says women and to the people who were harmed inpolitician and senior member of the shouldn’t go to protests because they these uprisings, she visited localofAl-Islah political party, and human will get beaten, let him have some hospitals and took pictures of thoserights activist who heads the group honor and manhood and come with harmed by police."Women Journalists Without In January 2011, she covered theChains," which she co-founded in me on 25 January. Whoever says it is early weeks of the Tunisian Revolution2005. She gained prominence in her not worth it because there will only from Sidi Bouzid Governorate in thecountry after 2005 in her roles as a be a handf ofpeople, I want to tell ul interior of the country. Mhenni was the him, Y are the reason behind this, ou only blogger present in the interior citiesYemeni journalist and an advocate and you are a traitor, just like the of Kasserine and Regueb whenfor a mobile phone news service president or any security cop who government forces massacred anddenied a license in 2007, after which The video beats us in the streets. suppressed protesters in the region. Hershe led protests for press freedom. went viral and hundreds of thousands reports and posts provided uncensoredShe organized weekly protests after of people appeared on the 25 January information to other Tunisian activistsMay 2007 expanding the issues for protest.She is a prominent member of and the international media.reform. She redirected the Yemeni Egypts Coalition of the Youth of the Mhennis blog, A Tunisian Girlprotests to support the "Jasmine (http://atunisiangirl.blogspot.com), is Revolution and in 2011, she was one written in Arabic, English, andRevolution," as she calls the Arab of five recipients of the "Sakharov French.Mhenni has been awarded theSpring, after the Tunisian people Prize for Freedom ofThought" Deutsche Welle International Blogoverthrew the government of Zine El awarded for contributions to "historic Award and El Mundo’s InternationalAbidine Ben Ali in January 2011. changes in the Arab world." Journalism Prize. Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 1 3
  • Cover Story Women of the Revolution CATRIONA KNAPMAN GSDM Middle EastDespite women’s full and dynamic representatives out of 508, or 2% women.participation in the 2011 revolutions, their In global terms, Egypt has one of the "In Tunisia, ideas of equalityparticipation in the evolving democracies lowest percentages of women were already prevalent inin these countries has been marked with parliamentary representatives in the world, law and society, which hasdifficulties and complications. according to Inter-Parliamentary UnionEach country has demonstrated its own (http://www.ipu.org/wmn-e/classif.htm). been ref lected in aunique approach to these issues, However The election of the first Constituent reasonable representativethey are linked by the common threat of Assembly also saw only 6 women chosen presentation of women.under-representation of women in public for the 100 member panel. This first Indeed quotas assured 50%life and political participation. Assembly was abandoned due to protest In Tunisia, ideas of equality were regarding its representation of not just inclusion of women onalready prevalent in law and society, which women, but of the full diversity of electoral lists and ultimatelyhas been reflected in a reasonable Egyptian society. The replacement 24% representation in therepresentative presentation of women. committee, elected in June 2012, includedIndeed quotas assured 50% inclusion of 7 women out of the 100 new members, Constituent Assembly,women on electoral lists and ultimately which was hardly much of an which translated into 58 out24% representation in the Constituent improvement. of 217 members, or 26.7%Assembly, which translated into 58 out of The Egypt’s streets, this issue is also217 members, or 26.7% women prevalent. Various stories tell the tale of women parliamentarians."parliamentarians. A woman is also deputy harassment and attacks on women inspeaker in this body. While the number do public life. The 2011 International "In Egypt, this under-not represent full equality, it is equitable to Women’s Day march was marked by representation has beenmost Western democracies in terms of harassment of women protestors. Imposedwomen’s political participation. Indeed, it virginity testing was recorded as taking on seen in both the streets andis a higher number of women MPs than in women protestors by human rights political bodies. Thethe UK, which has 22%. organisations. During protests in early June Parliament, elected in Tunisia has also not suffered the same 2012, women were reportedly beingproblems regarding safety and attacks of attacked in and near to Tahrir Square by November 2011, had awomen protesters as have been seen in large groups of men. Reports stated that mere 10 womenEgypt. Yet, there are fears of an Islamic the women were sexually assaulted by representatives out of 508,resurgence from some parties. They are mobs of men.concerned that the majority presence of the Egyptian women’s group, Nazra or 2% women. In globalIslamist party ‘Ennahda’ in the Institute for Feminist Studies claims that: terms, Egypt has of theConstitutent Assembly will mean the “(t)he attack on the women was calculated lowest percentages ofcreation of laws which impose the sharia at and organized so as to scare women awaythe expense of women’s freedoms. These from the public sphere, to punish women women parliamentaryfears are still to be confirmed. for their participation, and to keep them at representatives in the In Egypt, this under-representation has home to avoid the premeditated attacks world"been seen in both the streets and political against them.”bodies. The Parliament, elected in These attacks show that women’s placeNovember 2011, had a mere 10 women in public protests as well as public life is Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 1 4
  • Cover Story Women of the Revolutionbeing itself attacked and undermined. lobbying campaigns around ConstitutionalWhile the women organisations continue to and legal change. Women4Libya is "Yet women groups arefight, the continued dominance of the demanding that certain funds are ear- f ighting back. Many havemilitary in Egypt and the increasingly marked for women’s issues. Others have been organising training andtense and uncertain political situation is been involved in graffiti campaigns to support f or women politicalrendering women’s participation more and paint women’s faces onto the walls of themore complex. streets. In Egypt, one organisation, called activists and Parliamentary In Libya, women have also faced Harassmap is recording and mapping candidates"challenges as well as an unstable incidents and testimony of harassmentenvironment. Following the revolution, against women.rape committed against women by armed It seems that the struggle for women’s "In Egypt, one organisation,forces became a key issue. Stories emerged rights continues in post-revolution Middle called Harassmap isof honour killings being carried out by East. Prejudices from certain readings of recording and mappingfamilies against women who had been Islam appear to influence the attitudes andraped, demonstrating a strong patriarchy acceptation of women’s participation in incidents and testimony ofsystem. public and political life. The prevalence of harassment against women" While United Nations Security Council a strong patriarchal system also has itsmandate 1325, highlights the important effect in limiting the progress of women inrole women play in peacebuilding, only post-revolution North Africa. somewhat stuck. The stance ofone woman is a member of the National However, it can seem overly easy to women’s groups and movementsTransitional Council, Dr. Salwa Fawzi El- assume that the culprit of women’s remains defiant, yet answers must beDeghali. In terms of political exclusion in the Middle East originates untangled from a sticky web ofrepresentation, provision has been made to from women. In this sense it is worth social, political and religious politics.include a quota of at least 10% women in noting how other societies included and What is certain is that these newthe new Parliament, to be elected in July. excluded women, following revolutions. democracies offer a platform which Yet women groups are fighting back. As post-revolutionary new democracies ensures that this debate will continueMany have been organising training and in the Middle East and North Africa slowly to be discussed for a long time intosupport for women political activists and move forward, the question of women’s the future.Parliamentary candidates. There are also equality and participation remains Mohamed Bouazizi Tunisia in protest of social and political issues in the country. The publics anger and Mohamed Bouazizi was a Tunisian street vendor who set himself on fire on 17 violence intensified following Bouazizis December 2010, in protest of the death, leading then-President Zine El confiscation of his wares and the harassment Abidine Ben Ali to step down on 14 January and humiliation that he reported was inflicted 2011, after 23 years in power. on him by a municipal official and her aides. His act became a catalyst for the Tunisian The success of the Tunisian protests inspired Revolution and the wider Arab Spring, protests in several other Arab countries, plus inciting demonstrations and riots throughout several non-Arab countries. Source: Wikimedia Foundation Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 1 5
  • Cover Story Women of the Revolution TAWAKEL KARMAN Tawakel Karman is a Yemeni journalist, politician and senior member of the ofAl-Islah political party, and human rights activist who heads the group "Women Journalists Without Chains," which she co-founded in 2005.She has been called by Yemenis the "Iron Woman" and "Mother of the Revolution" and is also a co-recipient of the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize. In this edition we present a few excerpts from her Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech where she talks about the success of the Arab uprisings and the future of freedom and democracy in the Arab world.The revolutions of the Arab Spring in Tunisia, free people of the world.Egypt, Libya, Yemen and Syria, and the All ideologies, beliefs, laws and charters "the Arab world is todaymovement towards revolutions in other Arab produced by the march of humanity through allcountries, such as Algeria, Morocco, Bahrain, stages of its development, as well as all divine witnessing the birth of aSudan and others, in terms of motivation, driving messages and religions, without exception, obligepower and objectives, did not take place on us to support oppressed people, be they groups or new world, which tyrantsisolated islands cut off from all the rapid and individuals. Supporting an oppressed person isastonishing changes which our world is not only required because of his need for support, and unjust rulers strive towitnessing. The Arab people have woken up just but also because injustice against one person is oppose. But in the end, thisto see how poor a share of freedom, democracy injustice against all mankind.and dignity they have. And they revolted. This What Martin Luther King called "the art of new world will inevitablyexperience is somewhat similar to the spring that living in harmony" is the most important art weswept through Eastern Europe after the downfall need to master today. In order to contribute to that emerge"of the Soviet Union. The birth of democracies in human art, the Arab states should makeEastern Europe has been difficult, and victory reconciliation with their own people an essentialemerged only after bitter struggle against the requirement. This is not merely an internalthen-existing systems. Similarly, the Arab world interest, but also an international one required for "The peace in which theyis today witnessing the birth of a new world, the whole human community. The dictator whowhich tyrants and unjust rulers strive to oppose. kills his own people does not only represent a lived is a f alse "peace ofBut in the end, this new world will inevitably case of violation of his people’s values and theiremerge. national security, but is also a case of violation of graves," the peace of The Arab people who are revolting in a human values, its conventions and itspeaceful and civilized manner have, for so many international commitments. Such a case submission to tyranny anddecades, been oppressed and suppressed by the represents a real threat to world peace.regimes of authoritarian tyrants who have Many nations, including the Arab peoples, corruption thatindulged themselves deeply in corruption and in have suffered, although they were not at war, but impoverishes people andlooting the wealth of their people. They have were not at peace either. The peace in which theygone too far in depriving their people of freedom lived is a false "peace of graves," the peace of kills their hope f or a betterand of the natural right to a dignified life. They submission to tyranny and corruption thathave gone too far in depriving them of the right to impoverishes people and kills their hope for a f uture"participate in the management of their personal better future. Today, all of the human communityaffairs and the affairs of their communities. These should stand up with our people in their peacefulregimes have totally disregarded the Arab people struggle for freedom, dignity and democracy, nowas a people with a legitimate human existence and that our people have decided to break out ofhave let poverty and unemployment flourish silence and strive to live and realize the meaningamong them in order to secure that the rulers, and of the immortal phrase of Caliph Umar ibn al-their family members after them, will have full Khattab: "Since when have you enslaved people,control over the people. Allow me to say that our when their mothers gave birth to them free?"oppressed people have revolted, declaring the When I heard the news that I had got theemergence of a new dawn in which the Nobel Peace Prize, I was in my tent in the Tahrirsovereignty of the people, and their invincible Square in Sana’a. I was one of millions ofwill, will prevail. The people have decided to revolutionary youth. There, we were not evenbreak free and walk in the footsteps of civilized able to secure our safety from the repression and Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 1 6
  • Cover Story Women of the Revolutionoppression of the regime ofAli Abdullah Saleh. edge of failure and collapse during the last 33At that moment, I contemplated the distinction years. "Millions of Yemeni womenbetween the meanings of peace celebrated by the Our peaceful and popular youth revolution isNobel Prize and the tragedy of the aggression not isolated or cut off from the revolutions of the and men, children, youngwaged by Ali Abdullah Saleh against the forces of Arab Spring. However, with all regret andpeaceful change. However, our joy of being on sadness, I should note that it did not get the and old, took to the streetsthe right side of history made it easier for us to international understanding, support or attentionbear the devastating irony. of the other revolutions in the region. This should in 18 provinces demanding Millions ofYemeni women and men, children, haunt the world’s conscience, because ityoung and old, took to the streets in 18 provinces challenges the very idea of fairness and justice. their right to f reedom,demanding their right to freedom, justice and I would like to emphasize that the Arab Springdignity, using nonviolent but effective means to revolutions have emerged with the purpose of justice and dignity, usingachieve their demands. We were able to meeting the needs of the people of the region for aefficiently and effectively maintain a peaceful state of citizenship and the rule of law. They have nonviolent but ef f ectiverevolution in spite of the fact that this great nation emerged as an expression of people’s means to achieve theirhas more than 70 million firearms of various dissatisfaction with the state of corruption,types. Here lies the philosophy of the revolution, nepotism and bribery. These revolutions were demands"which persuaded millions of people to leave their ignited by young men and women who areweapons at home and join the peaceful march yearning for freedom and dignity. They know thatagainst the state’s machine of murder and their revolutions pass through four stages whichviolence just with flowers and bare breasts, and can’t be bypassed: toppling the dictator and hisfilled with dreams, love and family, toppling his security "These revolutions werepeace. We were very happy and military services and hisbecause we realized, at that time, nepotism networks, ignited by young men andthat the Nobel Prize did not come establishing the institutions ofonly as a personal prize for the transitional state, and women who are yearningTawakkul Abdel-Salam Karman, moving towards constitutionalbut as a declaration and legitimacy and establishing the f or f reedom and dignity"recognition of the whole world modern civil and democraticfor the triumph of the peaceful state.revolution ofYemen and as an Thus, the revolutions of theappreciation of the sacrifices of Arab Spring will continue "the revolutions of the Arabits great, peaceful people. through the efforts of youth, And here I am now, standing who are ready and prepared to Spring will continue throughbefore you in this solemn launch each stage and to fullyinternational ceremony. Here I achieve its objectives. Today the ef f orts of youth, whoam, in this unique moment, one of the world should be ready andthe most important moments of prepared to support the young are ready and prepared tohuman history, coming from the Arab Spring in all stages of its launch each stage and toland of the Arab Orient, coming struggle for freedom andfrom the land ofYemen, the Yemen of wisdom dignity. The civilized world should, immediately f ully achieve its objectives.and ancient civilizations, the Yemen of more than after the outbreak of the revolutions, commence5,000 years of long history, the great Kingdom of the detention and freezing of the assets of the Today the world should beSheba, the Yemen of the two queens Bilqis and figures of this regime and its security and militaryArwa, the Yemen which is currently experiencing officials. In fact, this is not enough, since these ready and prepared tothe greatest and the most powerful and the largest people should be brought to justice before theeruption ofArab Spring revolution, the revolution International Criminal Court. There should be no support the young Arabof millions throughout the homeland, which is immunity for killers who rob the food of thestill raging and escalating today. people. Spring in all stages of its This revolution will soon complete its first The democratic world, which has told us a lotyear since the moment it was launched as a about the virtues of democracy and good struggle f or f reedom andpeaceful and popular revolution of the youth, with governance, should not be indifferent to what isone demand: peaceful change and the pursuit of happening in Yemen and Syria, and happened dignity"free and dignified life in a democratic and civil before in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya, and happensstate governed by the rule of law. This state will in every Arab and non-Arab country aspiring forbe built on the ruins of the rule of a repressive, freedom. All of that is just hard labor during themilitarized, corrupt and backward family police birth of democracy, which requires support andrule, which has consistently brought Yemen to the assistance, not fear and caution. WOMEN’S RIGHTS women’s rights groups in the Arab world are fighting for rights set forth in the United governments to live up to their countries’ commitments under the treaty and withdraw AND THE ARAB Nations’ Convention on the Elimination of all reservations. Many governments in the SPRING All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), the most region need to take further steps to align national laws with existing international comprehensive women’s rights treaty, and commitments under CEDAW. However,Successful uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt are using it to demand government action. while many area governments have yet toin 2010-2011 have sparked movements Written in 1979 and entered into force in live up to CEDAW’s principles, women’sagainst dictatorships across the Middle East, 1981, CEDAW has been ratified by 187 rights activists continue to leverageNorth Africa, and the Gulf region. These nation-states, including every Arab country governments’ desire to appear to be inmovements call for democratization, new except Somalia and Sudan. However, each compliance with CEDAW as a way toconstitutions that protect equality, free Arab state has ratified the treaty with advance their cause. (Source:Womensspeech and assembly, and fair elections. substantial reservations that undermine the Learning Partnership)Women have been an integral part of these treaty’s spirit.revolutions, organizing and marching CEDAW is a critical tool in the fight toalongside men. Now, as countries in the advance women’s rights in a democratizingregion are in the process of building new Arab world. Across the region, women havegovernments, women’s activists know they been using CEDAW to pressuremust fight to play a substantial role. governments to take meaningful steps to Today, just as before the Arab Spring, advance women’s rights, and to push new Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 1 7
  • Cover Story Women of the RevolutionSierra Leone: Are morewomen in parliament enough? Legislating Equality Ahead of Sierra Leone’s 2012 Elections A woman in the village of Njama in Kailahun District, Sierra Leone "Despite impressive abundance of agricultural IOULIA FENTON and natural mineral GSDM Assistant Editor resources, Sierra Leone has a deep aid dependencySierra Leone is a country marred by political and less than 5% were women (six in total with twosocial instability. It was not until 2002 that it saw additional female Cabinet Ministers and Deputy problem, relying on donorsan official end to its brutal 11-year civil war, in Ministers). Like many other African countries, f or most of its basic servicewhich tens of thousands were killed, hundreds of Sierra Leone is pushing for passage of the Thethousands were displaced and numerous youth Gender Equality Bill ahead of its November 2012 provision and governmentwere abducted as child soldiers. The struggle still election. It is a legislation currently awaiting acontinues as weak security, legal and political parliamentary vote to be passed into law that aims spending. This requires theinstitutions threaten stability in this fragile state to stipulate mandated quotas, reserving at leastthat ranked bottom of 177 in UNDP’s 2005 Human 30% of parliament and local council seats for country to meet donorDevelopment Index, a composite statistical women. This is proportion called for at the 1995analysis measuring quality of life and standard of UN Beijing Fourth World Conference on Women criteria, such as placingliving. Despite the impressive abundance of that put “gender mainstreaming” as a top donoragricultural and natural mineral resources, Sierra priority on the global development map. more f emales in the highestLeone has a deep aid dependency problem, relying More women in parliament is, in part, the righton donors for most of its basic service provision idea. But putting more pant suits on political seats echelons of the country’sand government spending. This requires the does not go far enough, according to Ms Khadijacountry to meet donor criteria, such as placing Bah, who has a long and distinguished career as a democratically elected andmore females in the highest echelons of the senior policy advisor and gender mainstreamingcountry’s democratically elected and specialist at the World Bank, United Nations, the decentralising certaindecentralising certain government operations, to New Partnership for Africas Development and thequalify for funding. like. For her, gains through higher representation government operations, to Sierra Leone has an estimated population of 6 in numbers are only superficial if they come aboutmillion, 51-53% of whom are women. Yet, as a result of quotas and other forms of legislated qualif y f or f unding."political representation at the turn of the century equality. She posits that the problem with quotaswas dreadfully low. Out of 124 parliamentarians, lies in the fact that the appointed women have little Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 1 8
  • Cover Story Women of the Revolutionor no experiences in the process to make any Leone her absolute highest priority, calling for asignificant change: “[these women] don’t know zipper style of representation: one man, oneanything about the process, they can barely write - woman, with the ultimate goal of following in theall they do is go meeting to meeting to conference footsteps of their African neighbours - Liberia andto conference without making a change… They Malawi - by electing their first female president.would not be good candidates to run on their ownfor parliament”. The 50/50 group was This truly is the crux of the matter formally launched insince, for many, ‘gender the Sierra Leonemainstreaming’ in the form of quotas House of Parliamentcan be detrimental to the cause. They six months before theare an imposition of sorts and only 2002 generalserve to reinforce the men’s view that elections. Throughwomen’s place is anywhere but advocacy, lobbyingpolitics because they are not and grass roots "f or many, ‘gendercompeting on merit. These statutes training work, it canare also threatening and boast an impressive mainstreaming’ in the f ormconfrontational, leaving some list of achievements inobservers unhopeful that the Sierra the run up to the of quotas can beLeone Gender Equality Bill will ever elections: it hasbe passed. Officially, on paper, the trained a network of detrimental to the cause.Government of Sierra Leone over 60 trainers basedsubscribes to the Beijing call for at least 30% of across Sierra Leone, published a training manual, They are an imposition offemale representation in politics. Yet, despite this trained over 2000 women in campaign,and the apparent widespread popular female communication and advocacy skills and the role of sorts and only serve tosupport for the Bill, it is not well received by those women in Parliament and produced a women’scurrently in power, as one male Parliamentarian reinf orce the men’s viewnoted, “Why would I support a law that would aim manifesto. At the end of the 2002 elections, of theto de-seat me?” 165 women who stood for election,18 were that women’s place is This reasoning can be seen to be a major hurdle successful. There was a 50 per cent increase infor many gender mainstreaming efforts. Ms Bah, female candidates running in the ministerial and anywhere but politicsfor example, has seen her fair share of failures, deputy ministerial categories, but most impressivestating that “Gender work is not taken seriously, it of all, the elections recorded the country’s very because they are not first female presidential and vice-presidentialis sidelined and done just because without it there candidates. competing on merit "would be no donor money”. In her experience Despite these improvements, according to UNworking in Sierra Leone and over twenty other Women, today, “female political participation ratesAfrican countries, the gender focal point is rarely [in Sierra Leone] remain abysmally low”. Out ofmore than a receptionist or a specialist of another 124 parliamentarians, only 17 are women (14%) "It is not enough, f ortopic who has been saddled with being the “gender and only 18.9 per cent of councillors in the localgirl”. government are female, with less than 10 per cent example, to have parliament Replacing gendered parliamentary quotas and involvement in top civil service positions andother imposed ‘quantitative’ measures with the seats or higher educationselection and nourishment of women who can virtually zero representation at the level ofactually do the job well is what Khadija Bah chairperson or the ranks of Paramount Chiefs, places reserved f or women.would prefer. But the road is long and she is Ministers, foreign service and alike. And therealistic that greater physical numbers do serve as women who do succeed are not without their To save gender equalitygood starting points. However, to really make a critics. Most tend to be from the ranks of the well-difference, she would see Sierra Leone and Africa educated, urban middle and upper classes, leaving f rom becoming little more“do away with gender altogether”. Instead, she open the question of whether they can trulybelieves, they should focus on social inclusion, represent the needs of the majority of Sierra than lip service paid to keepbeing mindful of the differences in the needs of Leone’s rural and poor women.men and women and pitching the two sexes as There is a third and crucially important part of the donors content, aallies rather than enemies towards shared goals. It social transformation that needs to accompany greater representation and capacity building of transf ormation on theis not enough, for example, to have parliament women. For Ms Bah, the term ‘gender’ itself hasseats or higher education places reserved for become a problem. societal level is needed towomen. To save gender equality from becoming “It comes with a lot of baggage,” she saidlittle more than lip service paid to keep the donors “when people hear the word ‘gender’ they see it as create lasting change "content, a transformation on the societal level is women taking over men, whilst the concept is tooneeded to create lasting change. Providing women abstract to operationalize and thus is stuck at thetime off and pay sufficient enough to support institutional level, without trickling down to thewomen’s reproductive duties at home and ensuring social level. Therefore, legislation withoutan equal level of training that will allow women to enforcement and social transformation will notsucceed by their own virtue would be a good start. help women,” she continued, “if, instead, we focus A two-pronged approach of increasing the on issues of social inclusion, such as talk aboutpresence of women in the public sector and inequalities different groups like women, youth,building their capacity is already underway in the disabled and so on experience, we can do aSierra Leone since the mission to achieve higher whole lot more”.female representation in government has been It is true that some progress in absolutegiven significant boosts by a few notable numbers of female representation in the politics oforganisations that have championed the cause. The Sierra Leone has been achieved and the November50/50 Group is one such example. It was set up by 2012 elections promise to be the most feminised ina handful of Sierra Leonean women in 2000 under history. How much this is having a real impact onthe leadership of Dr. Nemata Majeks-Walker and female empowerment and greater equality inhas now risen to the self-professed heights of “a access to opportunities remains debatable and themovement for Women’s Empowerment and a force critics are many. Certainly larger scale changesto reckon with”. across societies and cultures would need to take “I have always believed in women’s rights and place before true equality is achieved, however,that women have a role to play in politics and the greater numbers are a sure step in the rightgovernment”, said Dr Majeks-Walker in an direction. After all, as Khadija Bah said: “Youinterview. For over a decade, she made women’s cannot build a house from the roof up and youparticipation in the political process of Sierra cannot promote women if the women are absent”. Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 1 9
  • Country Profile Mexico MÉXICO CAROLYNN LOOK GSDM country profiles12 PM, Mexico City. A street vendor followed, until the Spanish resistance finally was also responsible for widespreadprepares some of the most delicious (and gave in and recognized the Mexican Empire’s inequality and political repression. A likelyspiciest!) tacos in the world, based on independence in 1821. fraud that led to his fifth re-election finallycenturies of rich culinary tradition. At the Two years later, an internal revolt sparked the Mexican revolution in 1910, asame time, in Juárez, a woman working at a established the United Mexican States along war that killed roughly 900,000 people andfactory goes on her lunch break. the lines of a Republican Constitution, but ended with the establishment of the 1917Simultaneously, in Chiapas, an indigenous the following decades were marked by severe Constitution, the same that governs Mexicofarmer harvests some of the world’s best economic instability and constant internal today.coffee beans. But what unites these vastly political strife. When civil war finally broke Mexico was governed by revolutionarydifferent people in their gigantic nation? out, three new governments declared heroes in subsequent years, but these wereWhat lies behind this country that was once independence: the Republic ofTexas, the soon replaced with the creation of theone of the most developed ancient Republic of the Rio Grande, and the Republic Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI),civilizations, and is now such a key figure in ofYucatán. which ruled Mexico for 71 years. This largecontemporary Latin America? It was perhaps Mexico’s disunity and portion of time in Mexico’s history saw many The flourishing Aztec Empire came to its instability that made it the weaker player in economic and social reforms, miraculousbrutal end when Hernán Cortés of Spain the 1846 Mexican-American War, which economic growth, but also later on facedconquered it in 1521 after only two years of caused it to lose more than half of its land to severe social inequality and brutal crisis,battle. On their search for gold and other the U.S. Also, Mayan uprisings in 1847 culminating in the 1982 oil crisis and theriches, the Spanish unintentionally brought established relatively independent enclaves neoliberal reforms that linked the nation towith them an epidemic of smallpox that that lasted until the 1930s. The fragile nation the North American Free Trade Agreementwiped out more than half of the Aztec attempted to create unity under another (NAFTA), resulting in an oppositionpopulation, and left the remaining portion constitution in 1857, but the internal movement started by the Zapatistas thatwith a deepened respect for the Christian differences led to yet another war, which was continues today to fight against the injusticesGod, resulting in the widespread acceptance eventually won by the Liberals in 1861who of neoliberalism and globalization.of Catholicism and Spanish reign. The wanted a federal, secular state. France put In 2000, for the first time, the PRI lost aensuing period of colonial rule was Mexico under military occupation in the presidential election against Vicente Foxresponsible for much of the identity, culture 1860s, establishing the Second Mexican from the PAN, followed in 2006 by Felipeand architecture of Mexico today. Empire, ruled by Maximilian ofAustria. His Calderón, who only narrowly defeated the In 1810, however, Mexico was the first clergy, however, soon joined sides with the leftist candidate López Obrador, raisingLatin American country to declare Liberals, forcing him to surrender and be speculations about electoral fraud once more.independence from Spain. A Mexican priest executed. Obrador contested, but lost the 2012 electionnamed Miguel Hidalgo spoke out against From 1876 to 1911, Mexico was ruled to Enrique Peña Nieto, the candidate of thecolonial government in the small town of almost the entire time by Porfiriato Díaz, Institutional Revolutionary Party and theDolores due to the events of the Peninsular who invested a lot into the arts and sciences Green Ecologist Party of Mexico.War. Roughly a decade of bloody battles and had many economic achievements, but Mexico has a history marked by Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 20
  • Country Profile Mexicoexploitation, internal disputes, and countless governments that have manipulated electoral exciting time for Mexico: with the recentcorrupt governments that kept replacing each processes and the media to put certain birth of a powerful student movement againstother since the nation’s independence. It is its candidates in a favourable light, and media manipulation, and the rising interest incurrent events, however, that will determine governments that have failed to combat one the alternative government pledged by Lópezwhich path the country will follow in the of the worst and most violent drug cartel wars Obrador (following the leftist trend of otherfuture. With governments that have in recent ever seen, it is important that the Mexican Latin American countries), the country seemsdecades catered largely to U.S. interests and people do not remain silent. to be on the verge of a great change.forgotten the needs of their people, Right now, however, is a very hopeful and KEY INDICATORS EDUCATION -Compulsory and free until secondary school -Adult literacy 93.4% -Roughly equal among men and women -Doesn’t cover the needs of the entire population, universities are overcapacitated ROLE OF WOMEN -Violence and murder of female factory workers in Ciudad Juárez without due justice -Very low employment of women (41.3%, vs. 82.5% of men in 2004) -Misogynistic attitude towards women leads A religious procession in San Juan Chamula, Chiapas. Photo: Luis Gutierrez Arias to domestic violence Capital: Mexico City Official language: Spanish, CHILDREN -In rural areas may suffer from malnutrition Population: 114,975,406 (July indigenous languages (Mayan, -Walk long distances to get to school 2012 est.) Nahuatl and other regional Area: 1,964,375 sq km languages) spoken by 6.5% of FREEDOM Geography: Shares borders with population -Abuses, kidnappings, and killings by drug the USA, Guatemala, and Belize, as Ethnic groups: Mestizo 60%, cartels are a serious threat to the population, well as with the Gulf of Mexico, Amerindian 30%, White 9%, Other with more than 60,000 deaths in 5 years -Security threat against journalists: at least 9 Caribbean Sea and Pacific Ocean. 1% have been killed and scores of others have Climate varies from tropical to Religion: Roman Catholic 76.5%, been attacked and intimidated desert, and the terrain is mostly Protestant 5.2%, Jehovahs -Media manipulation and electoral fraud mountainous. Volcanoes and Witnesses 1.1%, other 0.3%, have severely inhibited legitimacy of government earthquakes pose destructive unspecified 13.8%, none 3.1% natural hazards to the center and Human Development Index: ECONOMY south of the country. 0.770; rank 57 out of 187 -GDP growth: 3.8% (2011); GDP per capita: $15,100 (2011; one third of per capita income in the US) -Income distribution highly unequal -Mixture of modern and outmoded industry and agriculture, increasingly dominated by the private sector -37.5% of GDP goes to public debt -2-3% of GDP made by migrant remittances ENVIRONMENT -Mexico City: one of the most polluted cities in the world -Lack of waste disposal facilities -Severe water pollution -Deforestation -Rapid urbanization -Reliance on oil industry for national economy and extremely low investment in renewable energies Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 21
  • Series Tips from the fieldTips from the Field - Positive youthdevelopment through sports "Sports competition is one of the f ew traditions shared by every culture in every country on the globe. From cricket to soccer to table tennis, sports have captured the hearts of nations, world over, and if harnessed the right way can be used as an extremely powerf ul agent f or change, especially in schools" NOAH MARWIL GSDM Latin America In 2000, with the announcement of the programming helps students to learn job and master challenges. When “healthy”second Millennium Development Goal skills, increase socialization, and/or re-enter opportunities to belong are not found in their(universal access to primary education), the the formal education system. In addition environments, youth will create their ownworld began to see a meteoric rise in providing coaches and mentors for children (often less healthy) alternatives (Roth, 2000;international educational development who do not receive this level of support in the Roth & Brooks-Gunn, 2000, 70).efforts. Organizations and government alike household can raise self-esteem and build Sports and play can promote physicalfuriously began building schools, training confidence. well-being, combat discrimination, buildteachers and developing curriculum to meet The core of effective sports programming confidence, and a sense of security, as well asthe UN’s ambitious challenge. As of 2012, does not focus on sports training per se, but play an important role in the healing andthere has been moderate success in achieving rather the application of sport lessons to rehabilitation process for all children affectedgoal number two, and although 61 million personal skill development essential to by crisis, discrimination, and marginalizationchildren worldwide still do not have access to employment training. In order to be a fair and (McCarthy, 2007).education, coverage is indeed growing. respected competitor, one needs to However, what many have not taken into understand, practice, and promote the core Who is doing this?consideration is that, although a child may values of respect, teamwork, leadership, A Ganar is a youth sports work-forcehave access to education, it does indicate that discipline, communication, confidence, self- development program run by Partners of thehe or she is attending class or truly learning. esteem and continued self-improvement. Americas. Started in 2005, it currentlyThere is much more to education than a These are not just life skills, but operates within 14 countries in the Caribbeanclassroom, a teacher and a few books, and the employability skills as well. and Latin America and has trained over 4,000world would be remiss to settle for such In addition, after school activities mitigate youth. They have seen great success over thesuperficial gains. For this reason, GSDM is gang violence through participation in past years, with roughly 70% of programproud to present the first in a series of tips organized activities, as well as promote participants graduating from secondaryfrom the field, showcasing effective physical well-being, combat discrimination,school, and 70% of those either findingtechniques proven to improve worldwide and build a sense of security. Additionally, employment, returning to study or starting aeducation and affect deep, lasting change. sports can play an important role in the business within one year. They have also healing and rehabilitation process for all made gains in partnering with the private children affected by crisis, discrimination, sector organizations to increase funding andThis quarter’s tip and marginalization. Sports competition is one of the few training other organizations to implementtraditions shared by every culture in every their methodology.country on the globe. From cricket to soccer Evidence of Efficacysports has been Soccer without Borders uses soccer as ato table tennis, sports have captured the Engagement in team vehicle for positive change, providing under-hearts of nations, world over, and if associated with higher self-esteem and served youth a toolkit to overcome obstaclesharnessed the right way can be used as an greater academic achievement and unrelated to growth, inclusion, and personalextremely powerful agent for change, to antisocial behavior. No moderation by success. They have grown greatly over theespecially in schools. gender, race/ethnicity, or school context is past 6 years and have been successful in observed (Mahoney, 103). growing a major following. Adolescents need opportunities for Love Futbol, a Guatemala based NGO,Theory of Change physical activity, development of competence has focused their efforts on creating greaterThe goal of scholastic sports programming is and achievement, self-definition, creative village cohesion by gaining buy in fromto incentivize parents and children alike to expression, positive social interaction with communities to participate and contribute toparticipate in the formal education system peers and adults, a sense of structure and their soccer field construction projects. Byand provide students with the life skills clear limits, and meaningful participation in using their projects as a community rallyingnecessary to become productive and civically authentic work (Quinn). point, they have been able to bring togetherresponsible members of society. Building Groups of interconnected members fractured communities that were oncesafe athletic facilities to run sports related encourage youth to take on responsibilities plagued with derision and competition. Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 22
  • Analysis Latin AmericaTaking the Pulse: Argentinesfrustrated with economy andgovernment SARAH FERST Economy every day Buenos Aires. Not only does it The Argentine economy is crumbling right remain a popular topic of news and before everyone’s eyes, a fact most visible to conversation, but also the city is littered with any inhabitant or visitor to the country anti-British graffiti, imploring the Anglo through its skyrocketing prices. Last Month, occupiers to leave the contentious island. "The government is for instance, the Buenos Aires subte (subway) Some think that one of the political groups fare jumped from $1.10 pesos to $2.50 pesos, spearheading the graffiti campaign, controlling in everyday lif e, more than doubling in one shot (there are Quebracho, is being paid by the government enough so that a new law about 4.5 pesos to the US dollar). Local to write these messages. Of course, this businesses were also affected. The cost of cannot be validated beyond hearsay and has recently been ratif ied to breakfast in one central hostel went up from conjecture. $60 to $75 pesos between February and April Disdain for the British is as Argentine as restrict the amount of 2012, a rise of 25%. Meanwhile, restaurants beef and yerba mate. Many Argentinian f oreign books imported into have not been able to continually reprint schools villainize the English in the retelling menus to keep up with fluctuating prices and of the conflict, propagating a culture of the country" now hand-written new prices over whited out agoraphobic dislike for the isle-nation. It is old ones, an amateur touch over otherwise not an uncommon story for the English to professionally produced Cartas. There is become the subject of ridicule when traveling "All indicators seem to be simply no denying the country-wide increases through Argentina, and it is therefore of everything from basic food staples to recommended for Brits to hide their pointing towards the same luxury treats, yet the Argentine government is nationality when asked. adamant that there is next to no inflation. common thread; the According to The Economist, practically Big Brother economic and political no one believes the inflation figures Propaganda is visible practically everywhere announced by the Argentine government in Buenos Aires. Street photos of President climate in Argentina is (about 10%). This is compounded by the fact Kirchner, known as Cristina, next to photos of that there are so many varying inflation rates Eva Peron, known as Evita, often compare becoming stormier with floating around in the news. A financial these two women in an angelic light. Evita services firm, known as State Street, for was known for helping the poor, and was each rise in inf lation and example, announced a 24.4% inflation rate loved by her countrymen in an overwhelming restrictive political with the cumulative rate since 2007 as 137%, way. It seems as though Christina may be whereas the government claims a cumulative trying to project a similar image. legislation. The status quo rate of only 44% for the same time period Unfortunately, there still exists a strong anti- (The Economist). A more trustworthy Peronist sentiment among Argntines and in Buenos Aires is not estimation comes from a survey of various many worry that Christina is straying too far sustainable and, if lef t sources conducted by the Torcuato di Tella towards Evita’s proletarian sympathies. University in Buenos Aires that concluded The government is controlling in everyday unchecked, could mean a that the real inflation rate as of February 2012 life, enough so that a new law has recently is likely to be somewhere between 25% and been ratified to restrict the amount of foreign repeat of the 2001 crash" 30%. books imported into the country. For every foreign book imported, a book written by an Citizens on Government Argentine author must be exported. The The average Argentine is not pleased with the government claims not restricting freedom of economy and the government’s reaction to the speech, but rather protecting its citizens from global financial crisis. Many people are the over usage of lead ink in foreign print nervous and scared, remembering the shock materials, a thinly veiled attempt to hide its of the last economic crash in 2001. Given the protectionist activities. rough ten-year cycle of past economic All indicators seem to be pointing towards crashes, many feel as though another crash is the same common thread; the economic and right around the corner. political climate in Argentina is becoming In addition to ongoing financial strife, stormier with each rise in inflation and Argentines are also struggling with a number restrictive political legislation. The status quo of political issues, such as the war over the in Buenos Aires is not sustainable and, if left Malvinas (Falkland) islands in 1982. Two unchecked, could mean a repeat of the 2001 decades later, the conflict is still present in crash. Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 23
  • Feature Climate Change Unless climate change challenges are more f ully and urgently addressed, current progress will be dif f icult to sustain, and the brunt of the impacts will be f aced by the poor of Central Asia. MEERIM SHAKIROVA GSDM Central Asia The vastness of Central Asia is for trade. This intensive use, increased by spectacularly diverse. It is incredibly rich in numerous economic and sociopolitical issues, cultural heritage and natural resources with makes the region highly vulnerable to climate geographically breathtaking mountain passes, change. seemingly never-ending deserts and There are many political implications to grasslands, and glacier-fed river basins: the this as shortages are aggravating conflicts Amu Darya, the Syr Darya and the Indus. over transboundary water and energy "The region has lower However, this largely arid and semiarid resources. Moreover, many countries in region is at serious risk from climate change Central Asia depend on glacial melt in the greenhouse gas (GHG) impacts, which threatens ecosystems as well Tibetan Plateau for water flows for emissions than more as economies and infrastructure that depend hydropower. The Energy Sector Coordinating on natural resources, especially the region’s Committee Meeting at Almaty estimates the developed parts of the world, water supply. These changes could undermine capacity of the installed hydroelectric stations the hard-won gains of recent decades, making of Central Asia`s rivers to be 4.037 megawatts but this is changing because it more difficult to achieve the Millennium (MW) in Tajikistan; 2.910 MW in the Kyrgyz of economic growth f ueled Development Goals and improve the lives of Republic; 2.248 MW in Kazahstan; and 1.420 many vulnerable communities. The region has MW in Uzbekistan (Saghit Ibatullin, 2009). by excessive oil, gas, and lower greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions than Now climate change is making these flows more developed parts of the world, but this is more unpredictable, thus threatening mineral reverses" changing because of economic growth fueled downstream energy generation. At the same by excessive oil, gas, and mineral reverses. time, rising surface temperatures are also Central Asia is exposed to climate change leading to increases in energy consumption, mostly caused by greenhouse gases (GHG) for instance, through greater use of air produced elsewhere. Its culturally diverse conditioning and increases in water pumping. population relies heavily on fragile land and In arid and semiarid Central Asia, arguably water resources, and pumps out the region`s the most vulnerable natural resource is water. river basins to the extreme for agriculture, for Glacier retreat and changing rainfall patterns energy sources, and for production of goods will alter water cycles, lessening the potential to generate hydropower and irrigate fields. Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 24
  • Feature Climate Change Moreover, as a result of climate change, rainfall and more frequent and more intense glaciers are retreating across Asia, but in the droughts, floods, heat waves, and other Himalayas they are receding faster than extreme weather events. Households, anywhere else in the world. According to the communities, and planners need to put in"In arid and semiarid Asian Development Bank, glacial melt will place initiatives that “reduce the vulnerability also make the weather more variable and of natural and human systems against actualCentral Asia, arguably the extreme, affecting ecosystems, energy and expected climate change effects” (IPCC generation and agriculture. 2007). It is very important to achieve low-most vulnerable natural Furthermore, climate change has carbon growth in the region and become moreresource is water. Glacier significant implications for food production. resilient to climate change extremes and As temperature rises in the arid and semiarid variability. Without adaptation and mitigationretreat and changing areas of the region, rainfall is expected to modalitites, development progress in Central decline and become increasingly erratic, and, Asia will be threatened, perhaps evenrainf all patterns will alter as already mentioned, water resources are reversed.water cycles, lessening the likely to dry up. As the climate becomes ever Unless climate change challenges are more more variable and extreme, the region will fully and urgently addressed, current progresspotential to generate become increasingly dessertified. will be difficult to sustain, and the brunt of Even with global emissions of greenhouse the impacts will be faced by the poor ofhydropower and irrigate gases (GHG) drastically reduced in the Central Asia. coming years, the global annual average Photos by NURJAMAL IRSALIEVAf ields" temperature is expected to be 2C. This warmer world will experience more intenseAlternative Energy Mongolian Family Uses Solar Energy to Power Home A family in Tarialan, Uvs Province, Mongolia, uses a solar panel to generate power for their ger, a traditional Mongolian tent. Photo:Eskinder Debebe/UN Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 25
  • Report South AsiaYet another form of child abuse SANDEEP SRIVASTAVA GSDM Special Correspondent Birth, marriage and death are three most Usually, children subjected to marriage areimportant events in many peoples lives. not consulted for their decision and nor doWhen birth and death are considered more or they know about the serious implications ofless choiceless, marriage, however, is marriage. Child marriage affecs different parts still today anconsidered a matter of choice. of the world differently and it has different Though it is considered as a moment of causes and tradition attached in different parts estimated 10 millioncelebration and a milepost in one’s life, when of the world.it is in the form of child marriage, it does not In South Asia, if a girl child is subjected to girls are married everygive real meaning for celebration. Child marriage at or soon after puberty, that ismarriage is one of the problems that cripples considered a child marriage. In many cases,social development in the developing world spouses are older, sometimes even twice their year bef ore theyand still today an estimated 10 million girls age.are married every year before they reach 18 or Whether a girl or boy is subjected to such a reach 18 or bef orebefore they become adult. marriage, there is no doubt that it is obviously A child marriage, by popular definition, is violation of human rights and basic child they become adultimposition of a marriage partner upon a child, rights. In the Universal Declaration of Humanand while doing so, fundamental rights of the Rights (1948), the right to full & free consentchild is curtailed or severely compromised. to marriage has been recognized. Consent Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 26
  • Report South Asiacannot be consider as full or free until the developing world (excluding China)partner is immature and has critical were registered at birth for the period Child Marriages inphysical, psychological, intellectual oremotional impact. Curtailing educationopportunity or personal growth does not 2000–2009. In South Asia Figures Nearly halfofall girls (46%) marry beforefall in full and free consent. the age of18 in South Asia, higher than any other region in the world.Global Scenario In some South Asian countries and regions,Across the globe, the average age of however, the rates are much higher. An estimated 10 million girlsmarriage is rising but the progress is slow. Though the average age at first marriage is are married every year bef oreThere are still very high rates of child gradually increasing in South Asia, the ratemarriage in some sub-populations, such as of progress is slow. Social norms around they reach 18 years.in the Surkhet district of Nepal, where old gender and marriage, cultural traditionstraditions, customs, and moral codes are like the dowry, customary law condoningstill in place. It appears that community the practice, and a lack of access to 1 in 3 girls in the developinglevel factors are influencing child educational opportunities are all factors world is estimated to bemarriages. Child which influence married bef ore the age of 18marriages are also fuelled the rates of childby poverty, concerns marriage across years.about security and the region.protection of girls, lack More thanof education or distance half the world’s 1 in 7 girls is married bef oreto schooling facilities, adolescents live her 15th birthday and somegender discrimination, in either Southcultural traditions, and Asia or the East child brides are as young asreligious traditions. Asia and Pacific eight or nine.National level factors region and childthat influence child marriage rates inmarriage rates include: South Asia have Girls f rom poor f amilies arethe country’s birth been closely nearly twice as likely to marryregistration system linked with early(which provides proof of pregnancies and bef ore 18 as girls f romage for girls); lack of an adequate reproductive health implications. wealthier f amilies.legislative framework that can be enforced In the last 20 years, infant/childto address cases of child marriages; and mortality rates have fallen significantly inwhether customary or religious laws South Asia but are still higher than the Child marriage occurs aroundcondone the practice. global average. South Asia has the highest Child marriage is generally more percentage of infants with low birth weight the world; 46% of girls underprevalent in jurisdictions that offer fewer and underweight under- 5 year olds in the 18 are married in South Asia;protections for women and girls. While world, sometimes almost twice the globalmost countries legislate for a minimum average (data 2005-2009). 38% in sub-Saharan Af rica;legal age for marriage, this is often not Child marriage often means that girls 21% in Latin America and theenforced. Some countries continue to have are not able to attend school. The regionallegal age for marriage lower than in the net attendance ratio for girls is 80% at Caribbean; 18% in the MiddleUN Convention on the Rights of the Child. primary school and 47% at secondary East and North Af ricaiii; and inThe legal age for marriage is also higher schools. Education is difficult to access in some communities in Europefor men than women in many countries. countries across the region (rates of girlsThe rates of national birth registration are attendance in school in Afghanistan, for and North America too.still low – just 51 per cent of children in example, are especially low). TheEarly Marriage in International Human Rights Conventions & DeclarationsNumber of human rights conventions & Convention on the Abolition of Slavery, the this Convention). No marriage shall bedeclaration has been made in past which Slave Trade, and Institutions and Practices legally entered into by any person under thiscovered issues of age, consent, equality Similar to Slavery includes in the institutions age, except where a competent authority haswithin marriage, and the personal and and practices similar to slavery: granted a dispensation as to age, for seriousproperty rights of women. Few are as Article 1(c) Any institution or practice reasons, in the interests of the intendingfollows: whereby: (i) A woman, without the right to spouses. Article 16 of the 1948 Universal refuse, is promised or given in marriage on (3) All marriages shall be registered y theDeclaration of Human Rights (UDHR) states: payment of a consideration in money or in competent authority.(1) Men and women of full age … have the kind to her parents, guardian, family … Article 16.1 of the 1979 Convention onright to marry and found a family. They are Articles 1, 2, and 3 of the 1964 the Elimination ofAll Forms ofentitled to equal rights as to marriage, during Convention on Consent to Marriage, Discrimination against Women prescribesmarriage and at its dissolution. Minimum Age for Marriage and Registration equally for men and women:(2) Marriage shall be entered into only with of Marriages state: (a) The same right to enter into marriage.the free and full consent of the intending (1) No marriage shall be legally entered into (b) The same right freely to choose a spouseparties. without the full and free consent of both and to enter into marriage only with their free Similar provisions were included in the parties, such consent to be expressed by them and full consent.1966 International Covenant on Economic, in personas prescribed by law. Article 16.2 states: The betrothal and theSocial and Cultural Rights and the 1966 (2) States Parties to the present Convention marriage of a child shall have no legal effect,International Covenant on Civil and Political shall specify a minimum age for marriage and all necessary action, includingRights. (“not less than 15 years” according to the legislation, shall be taken to specify a Article 1 of the 1956 Supplementary nonbinding recommendation accompanying minimum age for marriage. Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 27
  • Report South Asia minimum legal age for marriage for girls in Nepal, and Bangladesh). While all countries the region varies with age 16 (Pakistan) to 20 in the South Asia region are State Parties to Premas story (Nepal). In some countries (Pakistan, India, the Convention on the Rights of the Child Prema is a 16 year-old girl from a rural Afghanistan, Bangladesh) the legal age for and the Convention on the Elimination ofAll community in Bihar who wants to delay marriage is lower for girls than for boys. Forms of Discrimination against Women, her marriage because she believes that her While all countries have legislation implementation is varied. Only Bangladesh young body is not ready to bear children. providing for a marriageable age, has acceded to the Convention on Consent to “Our bodies, our internal organs are implementation in practice is a struggle, due Marriage, Minimum Age for Marriage and tender,” she says. “If you put water in an to factors such as ignorance of the law Registration of Marriages 1962. There are unfired pitcher it will break.” Prema (including among law enforcement officials), increasing numbers of child marriage doesn’t believe she is mature enough to the absence or lack of implementation of programmes in South Asia, which address have a baby and wonders how she can marriage registration requirements, gaps in child marriage through legal reform efforts, possibly take care of in-laws too if she the country’s birth registration system, and educational programmes, cash incentive marries before 18. inadequate punishment for breaking the law schemes, skills enhancement programmes Prema knows many girls who were (or low rates of prosecutions even where and opportunities, among others. married young. She describes their life as there are legal penalties, such as in India, hell. She recounts the story of one friend who was married at just 12 years-old. She "Child marriages are also f uelled by poverty, concerns about security and knows that her friend is unhappy; she has protection of girls, lack of education or distance to schooling f acilities, gender become angry and aggressive towards discrimination, cultural traditions, and religious traditions" friends and her relatives. Prema participates in a local community programme run by Pathfinder International that empowers young people – both boys and girls – to mobilise and take the lead in efforts to stop child marriage. Prema says that it is the responsibility of her and fellow young people to stop child marriage, as well as parents. She believes that if young people spread the message among each other about the harm that child marriage can cause, they will never marry their children young: “We must first educate our generation so that we can lead the next generation.” She claims the local authorities do little to stop child marriage – “but they should”, she concludes. *T protect Prema’s identity her name has o been changed f the purposes ofthis or story.Media coverage such as this one in India has helped raise awareness and reduce child marriage incidents Girls Not Bride was Launched in together to promote peace and human rights. Asia. Participants from Afghanistan, September 2011 in New York, and is a Chaired by Archbishop Desmond Tutu, the Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri global partnership of over 70 organisations group includes the Finnish Nobel Peace Lanka came together to share experiences, working to end child marriage at the Laureate Martti Ahtisaari, former UN ideas and information, and to discuss the grassroots, national and global levels. Secretery General Kofi Annan, Ela Bhatt, potential for working together to end child Members of Girls Not Brides have joined Lakhdar marriage in the together to accelerate efforts to prevent child Brahimi, Gro region. marriages and to support girls who are or Brundtland, Child marriage have been married. Fernando affects nearly half Girls Not Brides aims to maximise the Henrique of all girls (46 per collective impact of its members across the Cardoso, cent) in South world by supporting them to learn from each Jimmy Carter, Asia. The other’s experiences and successes; to raise Graça Machel participants, awareness of the harmful impact of child and Mary including marriage through encouraging open and Robinson. programme informed discussion at the local, national and The first implementers, international levels; and to mobilise policy, regional experts and financial and other support to end child meeting of advocates, shared marriage. Girls Not the belief that The organization was initiated by The Brides was held in New Delhi from 9 to 10 child marriage can and should be ended in Elders as part of their effort to foster gender February 2012. It brought together 70 South Asia. They brought a wealth of equality worldwide. Brought together by women and men from a range of grassroots, expertise and experience, some participating Nelson Mandela, The Elders is a group of national and international organisations organisations had been working to end child independent global leaders who work working to end child marriage across South marriage for over 20 years. Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 28
  • Development I n th e N ewsHow many more fish Drink your milk: waste is equal to gas emissions 53 arrested in Sriin the sea? from 20,000 cars Lanka in anti- mosquito searches COLOMBO: Police arrested 53 people for failing to eliminate stagnant water and other mosquito breeding grounds as Sri Lanka tries to prevent dengue fever, which has infected thousands already Waste milk creates a carbon footprint this year. equivalent to thousands of car Police, army and health officers Photo:Giles Revell exhausts, according to a study that searched 11,500 houses in the capital highlights the environmental costs of Colombo over seven hours, policeSeafood is the primary source of protein inefficient farming and the aggressive spokesman Ajith Rohana said. Thosefor more than one billion people - can marketing of supermarket food. arrested for not cleaning up theirthey live without it? Scientists have calculated that the surrounding environment face fines and Worldwide, 90 per cent of large 360,000 tonnes of waste milk that is up to six months in jail.predatory fish stocks are now gone due to poured down British drains each year He said this is the first time policeoverfishing. creates greenhouse gases equivalent to made such a large number of arrests The UN Food and Agriculture 100,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide, from Colombo for failing to cleanOrganization (FAO) estimates that 85 per which is about the same as that mosquito breeding places.cent of fish stocks are "overexploited, emitted in a year by 20,000 cars. Dengue fever has killed 74 peopledepleted, or recovering from depletion". Figures show that 99 per cent of this year and infected 15,000. Health Speaking on the occasion of milk that is thrown away by British officials say it has increased becauseInternational World Biodiversity Day on consumers is designated as "avoidable residents have become more carelessMay 22, UN chief Ban Ki-Moon warned waste". Almost half of this waste is a about cleaning their properties andthat over-consumption and rampant result of too much being served, with eliminating mosquito breeding grounds.pollution was threatening the worlds the rest discarded for being sour oroceans and marine biodiversity. past its sell-by date. "Commercial over-exploitation of the The scientists also found that if theworlds fish stocks is severe," he said. developed world cut its poultry"Many species have been hunted to consumption to Japanese levels –fractions of their original populations. about half of those in the West – theMore than half of global fisheries are cut in global greenhouse gas emissionsexhausted, and a further third are would be equivalent to taking aboutdepleted." 10 million cars off the road permanently. community can pool their expertise to create m- Mobile phone boom in developing world learning services that improve teaching and learning, and therefore promote long-term could boost e-learning development. "Its a big step in the right direction in terms of putting the possibilities in front of the GSMAs galvanising influence of social media on the Arab members andopportunities education represents in and business raising awareness of the commercial spring – has described the internet as "the Che the developing world," says John Traxler, Guevara of the 21st century". professor of m-learning at the University of If the global spread of technology can do all Wolverhampton in the UK. "Clearly its a small this, what else might it achieve? Quite a lot, sample, covering only four countries, so its according to the authors of a report prepared by the GSMA mobile industry body and published to indicativeget the than representative. But piece of networks rather message, its a valuable if the coincide with last weeks eLearning Africa work. Networks dont need to hear its virtuous, conference in Cotonou, Benin. Shaping the future – realising the potential of they need to heartoits profitable –and do encourage them get out there just enough to informal learning through mobile, explores mobile something." technologys potential to improve access to Mobile phones are increasingly ubiquitous in education for young people in developing poor countries, which now account for four inIn Kenya, mobile phones have become an integral countries. The study looks at Ghana, Morocco, every five connections worldwide. As Elsie Kanza,part of cash transfer schemes, enabling poor Uganda and Maharashtra, in India, identifying of the World Economic Forum, recently said:people in urban areas to buy food. In remote rural young peoples aspirations and priorities, "Regardless of social class, almost everyone [inareas of Peru, computers provided by the Euro- exploring the education and employmentSolar programme are fuelling an appetite for challenges they face, and scrutinising their mobile Africa] has a mobile phone, or twohave replaced in remote villages, mobile phones or three. Evenlearning among children. And the senior US phone use.The endgame is to establish how the the bicycle or radio as prized assets."political adviser Alec Ross – acknowledging the mobile industry and international development Global South Development Magazine July 201 2 29
  • Final Remarks From the Editor MANOJ BHUSAL GSDM, Editor-in-Chief It hasnt yet been 2 years since the world elected bodies in the post-for the first time saw the magical protests in revolutionary Arab states.the Arab world where hundreds of thousands The Tunisian Islamist party,of women, along with their male Ennahda, which won 89 seatscounterparts, took to the streets and chanted in the 217 seat assembly,slogans for freedom and democracy. called for the Shariah law to be recognizedWomens activism in the Arab world is not a as the principle source of legislation. Thenew phenomenon. For instance, in 1919, a Islamist Muslim Brotherhood wonnumber of veiled women in Egypt took to presidential and parliamentary elections inthe streets against British rule, demanding Egypt and the 28% of seats went to the moreindependence. However, the peculiarity of extreme Salafi parties. After their victory,the latest movement was that the global some media reports claim, women in moremedia was constantly present when the rural areas of Egypt were punished for thewomen, once again, shunned conservative way they dress and talk.norms and veils of superstition and camped Women rights activists in Egypt fear thatin Tahrir Square, protested in Sanaa and the status of women is going to deterioratehoisted their fists in the streets ofTunis. than before. I was shocked the We saw that almost on real times on our fundamentalists took over and I didntTV screens and social networking sites. We foresee a male gender constitution. Thatssaw the revolutions taking place out there. not what I went to Tahrir Square for, anWe saw the dictators being toppled and Egyptian activist writes on an internetkilled and exiled. We praised the brevity and forum.the courage of the revolutionaries. We Some argue that the Arab Spring was forassumed the dark days of the Arab World democracy and political freedom, notwere over. We assumed there is nothing but specifically for womens rights, and politicalfreedom and equality and democracy for all, democracy is not enough to abolish socialfor men and women, for the rich and the conservatism and patriarchy. So they believepoor, equally, absolutely. another revolution is needed in order to We extended our moral support and strengthen womens rights in the Arabsympathy. Some revolutionary leaders World.instantly became global celebrities, one of The revolutions seem to be hijacked bythem, Tawakel Karman, the Yemeni activist, the fundamentalists, but there are peopleeven received the Nobel Peace Prize. who still see room for optimism. Though When the heydays of the revolutions political rights have been compromised,have subdued, that promising, bright and legal rights have advanced and dictatorsmesmerizing picture of the Arab world has have been overthrown. Some court verdictsstarted to fade. Recent media reports claim have been encouraging, and the level ofthat, in Egypt, women have been repeatedly awareness among women seems to haveharassed in political rallies and, reportedly, unprecedentedly heightened. But then again,have been asked by men to go back to their the rise of the fundamentalists has beenkitchen and feed their babies as the unprecedented and scary too.revolution was over and everyday politics The way doesnt look very smooth, butisnt womens affairs. Womens one thing is sure: the desire for freedom isrepresentation was zero on the committee abundant, so abundant that soon in the futurethat drafted Egypts transitional we might see another series of revolutionsconstitutional declaration. sweeping throughout the Arab world, once Contrary to popular expectations outside again led by women, but this time forthe Arab World, the Islamist fundamentalist women. (Editor can be reached atand semi-fundamentalists dominate the manoj.bhusal@silcreation.org) Global South Development Magazine April 201 2 30
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