Municipal Development Counselling (MUDEC) Group .:: MUDEC GROUP ::.
  • Our Mission

    • Reducing poverty in our municipalities through encouraging gender equality and increasing citizen (End User) participation in democratic and governance processes.

Center for Municipal Studies (CEMUS)

CEMUS UPDATE

BACKGROUND TO THE CENTER FOR MUNICIPAL STUDIES (CEMUS)
THE GOVERNMENT OF CAMEROON (GOC) IS A SIGNATORY TO THE MDG’S. THE GOC HAS SINCE APRIL 2003 LOCALIZED THE MDGS THROUGH THE ELABORATION OF THE POVERTY REDUCTION STRATEGY PAPER (PRSP). SINCE THEN, GOVERNMENT EFFORTS HAVE REMAINED LARGELY ON PAPER. NOT HAVING A READING CULTURE, THE GRASS ROOT POPULATIONS HAVE REMAINED LARGELY IGNORANT AND HAVE BEEN IMMENSELY MANIPULATED BY THE ELITES OF EACH TRIBE IN THE COUNTRY WHO SEEK DEVELOPMENT FOR SELF AND FAMILY RATHER THAN FOR THE MASSES.
WITH THE COMPLETION POINT OF THE HIPCI AND COUPLED WITH IMMENSE PRESSURE FROM THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY, THE GOVERNMENT OF CAMEROON IS RUNNING OUT OF OPTIONS AND SEEMS TO WANT TO GET THINGS RIGHT THIS TIME AROUND. THE GOVERNMENT SEEMS DETERMINED TO ENGAGE IN PUBLIC PRIVATE PARTNERSHIP INITIATIVES (PPPI) WITH INCREASED GRASSROOTS PARTICIPATION IN THE MANAGEMENT OF THEIR OWN AFFAIRS.
FURTHERMORE, ANALYSTS PREVIEW A 4-5 % INCREASE IN ECONOMIC GROWTH IN CAMEROON OVER THE NEXT SEVERAL YEARS. BUT CAN THIS GROWTH BE” INCLUSIVE” WHEN WE SEE THE CONSTANT LACK OF TRANSPARENCY THAT IS SLOWLY OPENING A WINDOW OF VULNERABILITY? CAMEROON HAS BEEN NOMINATED TO CO-HOST THE AFRICA COMMUNICATION SATELLITE AND WE INTEND TO EXPLOIT THIS TO THE ADVANTAGE OF THE SOUTH WEST REGION.

JUSTIFICATION:-
CEMUS REPRESENTS SOLUTIONS FOR RURAL SOUTH WEST! OPEN SOCIETIES NEED STRATEGIES THAT OPEN PEOPLE MINDS. LET EVERY BODY KNOW WHAT IS HAPPENING AND WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE. THERE CAN BE NO “EVOLUTION” OR “REVOLUTION” WITHOUT QUESTIONS FROM THE POPULATION! PEOPLE CANNOT QUESTION WHAT THEY DO NOT KNOW!! CEMUS IS PREPARING PEOPLE TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC’S PROPOSAL TO GRADUALLY ALLOW PEOPLE PARTICIPATE MORE FULLY IN THE DAILY MANAGEMENT OF THEIR OWN AFFAIRS. THE POPULATION NEEDS TO DEVELOP TIME TABLES THAT WOULD ENABLE THEM MEASURE THIS GRADUAL PROCESS AS WE APPROACH THE MAGIC YEAR OF 2015!!
CEMUS IS A PROFESSIONAL AND EFFECTIVE PROJECT IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION THAT HAS ALSO INCORPORATES THE ASPIRATIONS OF THE GOVERNMENT OF CAMEROON.
CEMUS IS TIMELY AS IT GOES OPERATIONAL MID WAY THE CURRENT MUNICIPAL AND PARLIAMENTARY MANDATE (2008-2012). WHAT HAPPENS DURING THE CURRENT MANDATE WILL GIVE US BETTER INDICATORS ON OUR COMMITMENT TO THE MDG AND THE PRSP.
OBJECTIVES:-
 TO MOBILIZE AND ORGANIZE GRASS ROOT POPULATIONS TO PARTICIPATE MORE FULLY IN THE MANAGEMENT OF THEIR OWN AFFAIRS
 TO SENSITIZE THE POPULATION ON GOVERNMENT INSTRUMENTS AND ACTIONS GEARED AT LOCAL DEVELOPMENT
 TO STIMULATE SYNERGIES BETWEEN NATIONAL, REGIONAL AND LOCAL PLANS THAT INCLUDE LOCAL INITIATIVES AND ASPIRATIONS.

ACTIVITIES:-
 INFORMATION GATHERING, ANALYSIS AND DISSEMINATION
 INFORMATIVE AND EDUCATIVE COMMUNITY RADIO PROGRAMS

METHODOLOGY:-
CEMUS HAS A NERVE CENTER IN BUEA (REGIONAL CAPITAL) OF THE SOUTH WEST. THE CENTER IS DIVIDED INTO 2 UNITS: – THE INTERNET SERVICE AND THE RESEARCH AND DISSEMINATION SERVICE
 THE INTERNET SERVICE ALLOWS DEVELOPMENT ACTORS IN THE MORE URBANIZED BUEA AND ITS ENVIRONS TO STAY CONNECTED TO THE “GLOBAL VILLAGE”
 THE RESEARCH & DISSEMINATION SERVICE IS OUR CUTTING EDGE STRATEGY. IT GATHERS , ANALYZES AND DISSEMINATES PERTINENT INFORMATION TO THE APPROPRIATE QUARTERS (IT IS OUR BELIEF THAT WE ARE POOR LARGELY BECAUSE WE ARE IGNORANT AND LACK THE FREEDOM OF INVESTIGATION).

THIS IS A DEMAND DRIVEN SERVICE AND ATTRACTS COST RECOVERY CHARGES. IT MAKES PERTINENT INFORMATION AVAILABLE TO LOCAL DEVELOPMENT ACTORS ON ISSUES SUCH AS THE STATE AND COUNCIL BUDGETS, PARLIAMENTARY GRANTS, AWARD OF CONTRACTS AND OTHER BASELINE INFORMATION.

WITHIN A PLANNED STRATEGY, WE INTEND TO FACILITATE THE PROPER FUNCTIONING OF 5 SMALL HOLDER FARMERS COMMUNITY RADIOS IN 5 TARGET MUNICIPALITIES WITHIN THE REGION. THE COMMUNITY RADIOS WILL FUNCTION IN A FRANCHISE (STANDARDIZED PRODUCTS AND SERVICES, TRAINING PROGRAMS, MAINTENANCE POLICIES AND MANAGEMENT STRATEGIES). THE STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURES WILL BE JOINTLY DEVELOPED BY THE MANAGEMENT COMMITTEES IN CONSULTATION WITH THE LOCAL ADMINISTRATIVE, TRADITIONAL AUTHORITIES AND CEMUS. THE PROGRAM HINGES ON ECONOMIC, SOCIAL, CULTURAL, SPORT& LEISURE ISSUES BUT ALSO TOUCHES ISSUES ON TRANSPARENCY, ACCOUNTABILITY, LEGITIMACY, EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES, TEAM SPIRIT, MERIT, SERVICE EXCELLENCE AND RESPONSIVENESS.

PROCESS FACILITATION: ON THE LEARNING CURVE


Partnership Build

DO YOU WISH TO KNOW ………
Why the Strategic Development Plan at Village, Community, Council, Regional, National Level?

 Effective use of scarce resources.
 Helps to speed up delivery of services.
 Helps to attract additional funds
 Strengthens Democracy
 Helps to overcome the Legacy of unplanned Development
 Promotes Coordination between Local, Provincial, Regional and National Government agencies.


 Management Skills Transfer:
Basic Record Keeping
Leadership & Group Dynamic
 Project Implementation Monitoring Evaluation(PIME)
 Project Cycle Management(PCM)
 Market Revenue Studies
 Newsitems /Newsletters
 Radio & Television Talk Shows
 Conflict Management
 Participatory Planning
 Building Bridges: Civil Society & Government Technical Services
 Public Hearings
 Producer & Marketing Cooperatives: Formation & Functioning
 Networking

“Empower People such that they can hold their Leaders Accountable & Responsible”
MUDEC-Group, Buea.


GENDER AUDIT RESTITUTION

June, 2006

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Introduction                                                                                                                             03

Module I: Introduction to workshop                                                                                             04

Module II Presentation of findings                                                                                               09

Module III: Strategies to mainstream gender                                                                               13

Module IV: Action plan                                                                                                              18

Annexe                                                                                                                                     20


Introduction

Considering the fact that sustainable development can be best achieved if development is human friendly, which in turn calls for participation. Considering the fact that councils are charged with the responsibility of ensuring the socio – economic and cultural development of local communities. This brings to the limelight the importance of mainstreaming gender in council institutions and projects, with the aim of ensuring an equitable participation of men and women in the development process of their locality leading to good governance and effective democracy at the local level.

CEFAM being the sole government institution charged with the responsibility of training council personnel and council administrators.

In order to improve upon its functioning CEFAM carried out a gender audit in Cameroon in 2003 and today opted to invite other actors or partners in local governance for a restitution workshop.

This audit had as

Global objective:

To identify gender gaps/imbalances/ inequalities in Local Governance and make recommendations for mainstreaming gender in CEFAM training programmes.

Specific Objectives:

To investigate gender issues in local government training;

To identify gender gaps in CEFAM and its outreach activities;

To determine what constraints/problems CEFAM faces in mainstreaming gender;

To identify gender gaps in local council activities and management;

To make recommendations for gender mainstreaming in local government training;

To propose a methodology for the development of an appropriate gender sensitive curriculum for mainstreaming gender into local government

Objectives of the restitution workshop:

To present the results of the audit to partners and decision makers

Share experiences

Identify strategies to mainstream gender in CEFAM as well as in councils

Identify partners willing to participate in the implementation of strategies identified.

This report presents the results of the restitution workshop



The restitution workshop started with words of welcome from the director of CEFAM, Mr.   who started by giving words of appreciation to the participants present for honouring his invitation. He encouraged participants to use this opportunity to give their contribution which to him will help in improving upon the work done by the consultants of MUDEC who carried out the audit.

This was followed with the introduction of participants, whereby each participant had to give the following elements:

  • Name
  • Organisation
  • Function

1.2       Overall objective

The above restitution objectives were presented and validated by participants.

1.3       PROGRAMME

In order to achieve the global objective, the program below was presented to participants.

Module I

Introduction to Workshop

Module II

Presentation of findings

Module III

Strategies to mainstream gender

Module IV

Action plan for way forward

Module V

Conclusion and evaluation


1.4 TIME SCHEDULE

The following daily schedule was agreed upon:

Day 1

Day 2

Time frame

Activities

Time frame

Activities

09h00 – 11h30
  • Welcome speeches
  • Introduction to workshop
8h30 – 11h00
  • Restitution results of group work (continues)
  • Action plan
11h30 – 12h00 Coffee break

11h00 – 11h30 Coffee break
12h45 – 2h30pm
  • Presentation of findings
  • Discussions
  • Strategies to mainstream gender (group work)
11h30 – 1h30pm
  • Action plan
  • Conclusion and evaluation
2h30 – 3h30pm Lunch  break

2h00 —- Lunch

Closing

3h30 – 4h30
  • Strategies to mainstream gender continues (group work)
  • Restitution results of group work


1.5        WORKING METHODS

To maximize understanding and participation STRATEGIES! uses a variety of methods as presented below. These methods were presented and discussed in plenary, to enable participants become familiar with them.

Participation, fun, evaluations and visualisation are permanent and transversal principles, which run through out the entire length of the workshop.

1.6        SUCCESS CONDITIONS

In order to ensure harmony during the workshop, the following conditions were presented and validated by participants

·   Be punctual

·   Participate actively

  • Nobody knows everything, and everybody knows something, so…
    • Listen actively
    • Respect one another’s ideas
    • Turn off all cell phones


1.7       VISUALIZATION RULES

To use visualization effectively as a working tool, facilitate reading and permit information management, the following rules were presented to the participants:

  • One idea per card
  • 3 lines at most per card
  • Write visibly
  • Use the bold side of the marker
  • Close markers after use
  • Return marker at the end of the day



2.1. General presentation of the evaluation context

This module started with the presentation of the evaluation context which included the following elements:

  • Objectives and expected outcomes
  • Scope (focus, time frame, geographic coverage, subject of the study)
  • Limitations and
  • Methodology

NB for details of these elements please refer to the audit report

2.2. Strengths of CEFAM

CEFAM since its creation in December 1977 remains the sole government institution responsible for building the capacities of local administrators (both elected and appointed) and the rest of council personnel. Based on the audit and other facts the following are registered as main successes or strength of CEFAM:

It focuses on improving local governance and promoting democratic practices at the base

At the time of the study, the institution was headed by a woman

During the restitution CEFAM  though headed by a man. he participated during the audit exercise and expressed his great concern in gender mainstreaming in local governance which is even further demonstrated through his doing everything to ensure that this workshop was organised. As well in his opening speech his position was quite clear – gender mainstreaming a means to achieve sustainable development.

Good mastering in the field of local governance

An available and committed management team and staff

The institution holds and is currently playing a strategic role in the decentralisation process.

Not withstanding the following gender gaps or imbalances were presented as findings of the audit.

2.3. Gender gaps

Following are the gender gaps as presented by the auditors(which were either within or viewed by) and classified under:

  • CEFAM
  • Councils
  • Supervisory authorities
  • Partners


2.3.1 Gender gaps in CEFAM

Organisation and management:

  • The policies and strategies are gender neutral
  • Only 2 out of 15 boards of directors’ members are women (13.5%)
  • Women form only 20% of management staff (during the study, presently all 5 members of management team are men)
CEFAM staff:

  • Only 2 out of 15 part time teachers are females
  • Only 27.7% of permanent staff are women
  • Women form 20% of staff on secondment
  • Women mostly play support roles and occupy low status positions
Curriculum:

  • Courses offered were not gender sensitive
  • Majority of staff are not gender sensitive
  • There was no course on gender and development
Trainees:

  • 30% of trainees by 2003 were women
Library:

  • No books on gender and development

Constraints faced by CEFAM

  • Poor visibility of CEFAM(Marketing)
  • Low female representation in councils
  • Limited gender awareness
  • Most mayors prefer male labour
  • Low education of women
  • Female council workers may lose their jobs when their husbands are transferred
  • Male domination and hostilities
  • The socialisation process; women believe in menial jobs
  • Cultural factors: myths and beliefs about women
  • Women’s triple roles

2.3.2 Gender gaps in councils

Elected body:

  • 23.9% of councillors are females
  • Female mayors form 3.3% (11 out of 339 councils are headed by women) – presently we have 12 female mayors out of 339 mayors – 3.5%
Staff:

  • Very few women are found in decision making positions in councils
  • Only 22.9% of management positions in councils are occupied by women
  • Women form 32.2% of council staff
  • Most female council staff are assistant to
  • Women form the majority of council staff with no training
Training:

  • Decisions by mayors on whom to sponsor in CEFAM may not be gender sensitive
  • Non of the council staff had a training on gender and development
  • Council staff are not gender sensitive

Difficulty faced by female staff:

  • Family size may be a limitation for women (over 40% of council staff have 6 – 10 persons in the house


2.3.3 Gender gaps at the level of the supervisory authorities.

Role:

  • Appoints BOD and management staff
  • Allocates and approves CEFAM’s budget
  • Supervises
  • Evaluates CEFAM
Gender gaps:

  • appoints mostly males for BOD and management positions
  • budget allocation is not gender sensitive
  • does not insist for a quota for female trainees
  • MINATD’s policy on the constitution of list does not seem to be gender sensitive.

2.3.4 Gender gaps identified by Partners

International partners:

  • GTZ – ADEC program
  • PACDDU
  • Helvetas Cameroon
  • Friedrich Ebert Foundation
  • SNV
Gender gaps identified by these partners:

  • Low education levels
  • The women factor
  • Political factor
  • Socio-cultural factors
  • The legal framework was not conducive



The following strategies to mainstream gender at various levels  have been put together based on the results of the group work carried out by participants to identify strategies to mainstream gender and the recommendations provided by the consultants who carried out the gender audit.

3.1 Strategies to mainstream gender in CEFAM[1]

  • CEFAM should develop and implement a gender policy which is reflected in all aspects of it’s daily functioning

Such a strategy could include the following:

Level / strategies

Key elements leading to strategies attainment

Expected outcomes or results

Organisation and management

  • The number of female members in the board of directors be at least 40%
  • Women should constitute at least 40% of management staff
  • Board members and staff trained on gender

  • MINADT should request for 2 persons from the ministries insisting that one should be a female
  • Planned programs for gender sensitisation of management and staff
  • MINATD should propose names of women for management positions
  • Planned programs for gender sensitisation of BOD members
  • CEFAM should put in place a gender focal point

  • Women’s representation increased
  • BOD members easily allocate budget for GAD activities
  • CEFAM’s policies and strategies are gender sensitive
CEFAM staff:

  • At least 40% of training staff be women
  • At least 50% of support staff be women
  • Gender sensitisation and training program for CEFAM staff implemented
  • Request for more female staff
  • More female trainees recruited
  • Management can use informal means to advertise jobs
  • Number of female staff increased
  • CEFAM staff is gender sensitive
Curriculum:

  • A core course on gender and local governance be introduced
  • Integrate gender in all courses offered in the curriculum
  • Refresher courses on gender should be organised for different level of staff and clients

  • Training manuals be developed on gender and local governance
  • The library be updated with books on gender and related topics
  • Gender orientation integrated into CEFAM’s curriculum
Trainees (students):

  • At least 40% of the intake into CEFAM should be reserved for female candidates,
  • 40% regional balance be taken into consideration during intake into CEFAM

  • Gender sensitisation programs for councils especially mayors

  • More female students in CEFAM
Budget:

  • Gender budgeting
  • Allocate budget for gender specific activities

  • CEFAM’s program is gender sensitive
Marketing of CEFAM:

  • CEFAM should develop and strengthen partnership with key institutions in and out of the country

3.2 Strategies to mainstream gender in councils

Elaborate and implement gender policies

Level / strategies

Key elements leading to strategies attainmant

Expected outcomes or results

Elected body:

  • National policy; political quota at 40/60
  • Gender sensitisation and training program for elected officials
  • Encourage and empower female mayors association
  • Programs for more women to go in for elections be organised (Mobilise women candidates and voters for women candidates)
  • Sensitise women to join politics in numbers
  • Present gender alternating list
  • Women head list and vie for mayors
  • More women mayors
  • Council programs are gender oriented
Staff:

  • Staff recruitment should be 50/50
  • Capacity building on GAD for councils
  • Create gender and local governance focal points

  • Equal appointments to posts of responsibility
  • FEICOM should give scholarships to female candidates
  • Recommend more women for professional training – CEFAM
  • Preference for admission and/or recruitment to female candidates
  • More women in higher positions in councils
  • Council staff is gender sensitive
Projects and programs

Ensure quantitative and qualitative participation at all levels of project cycle

  • Gender promotion in communities by councils
  • Build the capacities of women.
  • Review cultural values

Increased participation of women in council activities
Council budget

Implement gender budgeting

  • Budgetary allocation for GAD activities
  • Train related staff on gender budgeting

Increased gender specific activities
Contracts

  • Increase representation in tender boards
  • Award contracts to female entrepreneurs
  • Tender boards be chaired by women
Ensure women, have access to contracts by:

–  Providing information

–  Training

–   Reviewing  conditions and making them progressive

More women have access to council benefits – contracts

3.3 Strategies to promote gender mainstreaming in councils

  • Legalise quota of at least 30% representation
  • Appointments are fixed at 4O% quota for BOD and management staff.
  • Trainees quota be fixed at 55% for female candidate intake
  • Gender sensitive budget within their various institutions; (15% budget allocation for gender specific activities)
  • Gender unit or focal point created within these institutions
  • Elaborate and implement gender policy.


3.4 Strategies to promote gender mainstreaming in councils

Local partners International partners
Building capacities:

  • Sensitise and organise training programs for women (leadership and management, existing laws, election process, cultural values, gender, income generating activities, etc.)
  • Carry out sensitisation programs to the general public especially men for a change of attitudes (traditional rulers, political leaders, husbands)
  • Organise refresher courses for female workers
  • Lobby at the level of the government the change of unfavourable laws
Building capacities through program support:

  • Finance gender and local governance activities
  • Provide scholarships to female students in CEFAM

Supporting the creation of facilities

  • Sponsor the production of manuals in gender and local governance
  • Sponsor the creation of facilities to care for babies and children
  • Sponsor the creation of shelter homes for battered women

Technical assistance:

  • Provide technical assistance

During the workshop an exhaustive list of partners was identified in a working group. They were as follows:

Partners

International

Local

  • GTZ – ADEC program
  • PACDDU
  • Helvetas Cameroon
  • Friedrich Ebert Foundation
  • SNV
Institutional:

  • FEICOM
  • MINDUH
  • MINPLADAT
  • MINDAF
  • Public Work
  • MINADER
  • HEALTH
  • UCCC
  • PNDP
  • Etc.
Private

  • Enterprises
  • Local NGOs
  • Women forums and networks



Action plan

Key activities

Actors

Roles

Resources

Expected results

Appropriate time frame

Develop  gender and local governance training manuals

CEFAM

Coordinating

manuals

December 2006

SNV

other partners (MUDEC)

–         Technical support

–         Content elaboration

PNDP

Financing

Sensitisation ands training of mayors
Gender training for CEFAM
Introduce a course on gender and local governance
Acquire documentation on gender
Mobilisation for women political leadership
Train council staff and councillors

Due to time constraint a committee was set up to complete the action an plan. Following are members of the committee and their role.

Follow –up committee

Members:

CEFAM

MUDEC

SNV

STRATEGIES

MAYOR Konye council

Role:

Finalise action plan and make it SMART

Recommendation: Meet before the 15th of Jully, 2006



Restitution of group work

Strategies to mainstream gender

Group 1: In CEFAM

  • Develop gender policy which is reflected in all aspects of CEFAM’s daily life (it was precised in plenary that CEFAM had to propose and lobby for such a policy to be adopted by hierarchy at various levels)
  • Elaborate strategies to implement the gender policy

Strategies:

  • The number of female members in the board be at least 40%
  • Women should constitute at least 40% of management staff
  • At least 40% of training staff be women
  • At least 50% of support staff be women
  • Gender budgeting: allocate budget for gender specific needs
  • At least 40% of the intake into CEFAM should be reserved for female candidates,
  • 40% regional balance be taken into consideration during intake into CEFAM

Curriculum:

  • Specific and relevant courses on gender be included in the curriculum
  • Refresher courses on gender should be organised for different level of staff and clients
  • Introduce elements from users through a needs assessment

Library:

  • Documentation on gender be acquired for the library
  • CEFAM should make itself better known and increase opportunities for women
  • CEFAM should develop and strengthen partnership with institutions in the socialisation process.

Group members: Fon, Minang, Njie, Bemoute, Pone

Group 2: In Councils

Elected:

  • Sensitise women to join politics in numbers
  • National policy; political quota at 40/60
  • Present gender alternating list
  • Women head list and vie for mayors
  • Women should stop “PHD – put her down” syndrome
  • Encourage and empower female mayors association
  • Organise neighbourhood assemblies early enough
  • Mobilise women candidates and voters for women candidates
Employment:

  • Staff recruitment should be 50/50
  • Equal appointments to posts of responsibility
Economic empowerment:

  • Award contracts to female entrepreneurs
  • Tender boards be chaired by women
  • Create gender and local governance focal points
  • Elaborate and implement gender policies
Training:

  • Recommend more women for professional training – CEFAM
  • Preference for admission to female candidates
  • Council staff training on gender and development
Large family size constraints:

  • Review cultural values
  • Female staff be organised to meet up with societal roles

Group members: Eshie N, Nalowa, Atemnkeng, Mbongale, Nlo, Djoujue

Group 3: Supervisory authorities.

  • Awareness raising
  • Appointments fixed at 4O% quota for BOD and management staff.
  • Gender sensitive budget; 15% budget allocation
  • Trainees quota of 55% intake
  • Legalise quota of at least 30% representation
  • Gender unit or focal point created
  • Elaborate and implement gender policy.

Group 4: Partners.

Local partners International partners
Educational level
  • Sensitise and train in specific fields
  • Organise refresher courses for female workers
  • Sensitise and train women on leadership skills in rural areas
  • Sponsor training of female trainees in CEFAM and other specialised institutions
Women factors
  • Sensitise and organise educational programs
  • Train on leadership
Political factors
  • Sensitise political parties
  • Lobbying and advocacy
  • sponsorship of female candidates
Socio-cultural factors
  • Sponsor the creation of facilities to care for babies and children
  • Sponsor and train the management of income generating activities
  • Sponsor the creation of shelter homes for battered women
  • Sponsor sensitisation programs to change attitudes of men, e.g. for traditional rulers, political leaders husbands, etc.
The legal framework
  • Sensitise women on existing laws
  • Lobby at the government to change unfavourable laws

Partners

International

Local

  • GTZ – ADEC program
  • PACDDU
  • Helvetas Cameroon
  • Friedrich Ebert Foundation
  • SNV
Institutional:

  • FEICOM
  • MINDUH
  • MINPLADAT
  • MINDAF
  • Public Work
  • MINADER
  • HEALTH
  • UCCC
  • PNDP
Private Local NGOs

Women forums

PNDP:

The National Coordinator of PNDP expressed the possibility of her financing:

  • The production of training manus
  • Capacity building for mayors


Recommendation from Experts

Recommendations

Expected outcomes

CEFAM organisation and management

  • MINADT should request for 2 persons from the ministries insisting on one should be a female
  • Planned programs for gender sensitisation of management and staff
  • MINATD should propose names of women for management positions
  • Planned programs for gender sensitisation of BOD members

Make provision for private candidates.

  • Women’s representation increased
  • BOD members easily allocate budget for GAD activities
  • CEFAM’s policies and strategies are gender sensitive
  • Gender orientation to CEFAM curriculum
  • CEFAM puts in place a gender focal point

CEFAM Staffing

  • CEFAM should request for more female staff
  • Management can use informal means to advertise jobs
  • More female trainees recruited
  • More female staff recruited

Local government training

  • Gender sensitisation program for CEFAM staff
  • A core course on gender and local governance
  • Training manuals be developed on gender and local governance
  • Gender sensitisation programs for councils especially mayors
  • The library updated with books on gender and others
  • CEFAM curriculum is gender sensitive
  • More female students recommended and sponsored by mayors

Councils

  • Capacity building on GAD for councils
  • Programs for more women to go in for elections be organised
  • Women should strategise into get to higher positions
  • Council staff be trained on GAD and others
  • Gender promotion in communities by councils
  • Budgetary allocation for GAD activities
  • FEICOM should give scholarships to female candidates
  • More women become mayors
  • More women in higher positions in councils

Partners

  • International partners should finance gender and local governance activities
  • International partners should provide technical assistance
  • International partners should sponsor the development of manuals
  • International partners should give scholarships to female students
  • More female students trained
  • More people gender sensitised
  • More women in strategic positions in local governance

General evaluation

One thing I learned

One thing I did not like

Suggestion for improvement

Need for us to be gender sensitive

Sensitisation on gender issues is very important and necessary in local development

The issue of gender in local governance

How CEFAM functions

Openness in discussions

Mainstreaming gender is an appropriate strategy to improve local governance

Strategies in mainstreaming gender in development

The woman must play a role in the economy and political life. No more domination

Gender awareness

Introducing a core course on gender in CEFAM will help to reduce gender gaps

Group work

Participatory spirit

Recognition of women’s capabilities

About CEFAM and gender implementation

Gender mainstreaming in local governance

The role of CEFAM

Process to into CEFAM or to take part in the competitive examination

Definition of mainstreaming

Gender is a key issue to handle in decentralisation.

Over belabouring an idea thus losing consistency

The absence of many women

Some expectations were unrealistic and not pointing enough

Time management

Absence of most partners

Long discussions on futile matters

Few mayors were present

Time management not the best

Absence of time keeper

Time frame for the workshop was too short

Indiscriminate speaker by others when someone has the floor

Time management

Absence of a time keeper

We must always keep in mind evolution in our social context

Hope CEFAM accept suggestions

More females in other local institutions be invited

More order and silence

Adequate preparation of mayors in future workshops

Be bilingual next time

Guarantee presence and participation of key actors

The moderator should not give room to disordered participants

The follow-up committee should create an activity on the visibility of CEFAM

Association the media

Contact addresses for all participants

Realisation of action plan

Send out documentation beforehand

Action plan be implemented

Final document should be sent to all concern

Time management should be improved.

More local and international partners be invited next time to take commitments


List of participants


[1] CEFAM’s main role is to propose and carry out effective lobbying for such a policy to be adopted by hierarchy at various levels)


Proposal for an Independent Electoral Commission

BACKGROUND ON MUDEC

Since the advent of multiparty politics in Cameroon in the 1990’s there has been increasing demand by the citizenry for greater decentralization in governance. Some strides have been made in this direction, notably the provision for Regional and Local Government in the 1996 revised Constitution.

On the field however, Municipalities have continued to stagnate due to a multiplicity of problems: insufficient resources, unskilled management, citizen apathy, conflict of roles and relationships, neglect of the marginalized, lack of transparency in management etc, a far cry from local good governance.

The result is rural exodus, urban decay, unemployment, rise in violent crime, alarming rise in the incidence of HIV/AIDS, environmental degradation to mention but a few.

It is against this background that MUDEC Group was formed with the aim of developing the capacities of Municipal Authorities as well as the communities living therein to work together to build sustainable Municipalities in Cameroon. MUDEC-Group is a service delivery organization (Service Provider) located in Buea, South West Region of Cameroon.

We are a development-oriented organization with no political, religious or cultural affiliations. The Group comprises individuals with multi-disciplinary backgrounds who are well versed in their subject domains.

BACKGROUND ON ELECTIONS IN CAMEROON

Since 1992 Cameroon has organized several multi party elections including Presidential, Parliamentary and Local Councils. For most citizens, however, this has largely been cosmetic as all previous election results have been vigorously contested on the basis of widespread rigging and voter disenfranchisement.

For instance, during the 2002 elections to both the Parliament and Local Councils there were 6.8 million registered voters nationwide. But for the recent 2004 Presidential elections only about 4 million registered in spite of several public sensitization campaigns.

The Government of Cameroon is therefore determined to improve on this situation by instituting an Independent Electoral Commission.

The Management Control Team of MUDEC Group in its continuous attempts to contribute towards national development and having consulted others shades of opinion on this issue herewith proposes to the Government of Cameroon to consider the following:

  1. 1. ESTABLISHMENT OF THE INDEPENDENT ELECTORAL COMMISSION

Þ     There is an Electoral Commission  for the Republic , which is independent and subject only to the constitution and the law

Þ    The Commission shall be impartial and shall exercise its powers and perform its functions without fear, favour or prejudice

Þ    The Constitution of the Republic is amended to create this organ

  1. 2. OBJECTIVES OF THE INDEPENDENT ELECTORAL COMMISSION

Þ     The objective of the commission is to strengthen constitutional democracy and promote democratic electoral processes

  1. 3. POWER, DUTIES AND FUNCTIONS OF THE INDEPENDENT ELECTORAL COMMISSION

Þ     Manage any election:

Þ    Ensure that any election is free and fair

Þ    Promote conditions conducive to free and fair elections

Þ    Promote knowledge of sound and democratic electoral processes

Þ    Compile and maintain voters rolls by means of a system of registering eligible voters by utilizing data available from government sources and information furnished by voters

Þ    Compile and maintain a register of political parties

Þ    Establish and maintain liaison and cooperation  with political parties

Þ    Undertake  and promote research into electoral matters

Þ    Promote the development of electoral expertise and technology in all spheres of government

Þ    Continuously review electoral legislation and propose electoral legislation and make recommendations in connection therewith

Þ    Promote voter education

Þ    Promote cooperation with and between persons, institutions, governments and administrations for the achievement of its objectives

Þ    Demarcate wards in the local sphere of government or to cause them to  be demarcated

Þ    Declare the results of elections for national, regional and municipal legislative bodies within seven days after such elections

Þ    Adjudicate disputes which may arise from the organization, administration or conducting of elections and which are of an administrative nature; and

Þ    Appoint appropriate public administrators in any sphere of government to conduct elections when necessary.

  1. 4. COMPOSITION, TERM OF OFFICE AND CONDUCT

Þ     10 members

Þ    Comprising one from each region with a fair gender balance

Þ    They are nominated by the President and endorsed by Parliament and the Supreme Court

Þ    They should include Cameroonians from several career backgrounds and political parties

Þ    They can be removed by Acts or Parliament only

Þ    The term should be 10 year with no re appointment

Þ    There should be a Chief Electoral Officer

Þ    There should be Regional Offices comprising persons from within the region

Þ    Commission members should be protected from prosecution for acts related to their activities.

CONDUCT

  • Members should serve impartially and independently and perform their function as such in good faith and without fear, favour or prejudice
  • If appointed in a full-time capacity, members serve as such to the exclusion of any other duty or obligation arising out of any other employment or occupation or the holding of any other office, unless specifically authorized thereto by the President of the Republic.

OTHER ISSUES

Administration, Staff and Accountability:

  • · There should be a Chief Electoral Officer (appointed by the Commission) who is the head of administration and accounting of the commission
  • · There should be annual audits of the commission

Registration of Political Parties

  • · The Chief Electoral Officer, upon consultation with the commission should register political parties in Cameroon

Establishment of an Electoral Court

  • · There should be an Electoral Court with status of the Supreme Court that should make rules in terms of which electoral disputes and complaints about infringements of the Electoral Code of Conduct are resolved.