No fewer than 25,828 girls are deprived of their right to education in the Niger Republic.
This is according to a report by OCHA Niger dated 20 December 2021, and made known by the country’s delegates to the ECOWAS parliament.
In its report, the delegates said ” According to a report by OCHA Niger dated 20 December 2021, 53,562 children, including 25,828 girls are deprived of their right to education. This situation is due to the activities of non-state armed groups.
“Out of the thirteen departments in the Tillabéry region, ten (10) of these departments as well as 21 communes bear the brunt of this situation, which has led to the closure of several schools.
“During this period, the right to work was also put to the test for several months or even years. Many young people in the regions of Diffa and Tillabéri slid into unemployment following the ban on motorbike taxis, which was their main activity”.
Read full report below:
I/ Political Situation
II/ Security situation
III/ Human Rights Situation
IV/ Health Situation
V/ Status of Implementation of ECOWAS Texts, in Particular:
- The Protocol relating to the Community Levy
- The Protocol relating to the Free Movement of Persons and Goods
- The Supplementary Act on Equality of Rights between Women and Men for Sustainable Development in the ECOWAS Region.
I/ Political Situation
Following the second round of the presidential election, which ushered Niger into the first democratic change of government, and the forming of a new government, the institutions of the republic were installed.
The main results achieved as regards political governance have to do with the strengthening of the stability of state institutions and the fight against corruption. Therefore, all government institutions created following the 2020-2021 general elections have been installed and are up and running. Within a year, the government has successfully carried out its actions in order to meet the needs of the people. This has already translated into the consolidation of the progress in terms of democracy and public freedom by ensuring compliance with the constitution and the separation of powers, while providing resources to enable government institutions to operate effectively. A healthy and peaceful atmosphere has been promoted in the relationships between civil society and the government as well as among the political parties of the majority, which have just increased in number with the coming on board of the MPK Kishin Kassa of IBRAHIM YACOUBOU and those of the opposition by enhancing the efficiency of the framework for political dialogue and by implementing the provisions of the political parties’ charter.
Opposition leaders have got visibility through the effective implementation of its status by granting the leader of the opposition his title.
The government has expressed its intention to reactivate the National Council for Political Dialogue to ease the political climate in the country.
II/ Security Situation
On the security front, the country is bedevilled by persistent terrorist attacks. However, security has improved in the east and centre of the country, along the border with Nigeria, and the threat has shifted towards the border with Burkina Faso, where the situation remains worrying.
The government has made enormous financial sacrifices to provide the defence and security forces with equipment and logistics adapted to the context. Mention can also be made of increased staffing in various forces followed by adequate training in order to make them more operational, especially with the opening of the special forces training centre in Tilia. Also, the strengthening of military cooperation with allied forces, in particular the planned redeployment of French and European forces, made it possible to control the situation. All these actions have contributed to boosting the strength of our defence and security forces and turning the tide in the fight against terrorism.
Thus, satisfactory results have been achieved in terms of security, which has translated into the return of internally displaced persons to their villages of origin with an initial phase of resettlement of the populations of twenty communities.
There is hope that the people’s life will come back to normal as most of the terrorist leaders have been annihilated. Terrorist groups are now disorganised and weakened and our armies have increasingly adapted to the new situation.
III/ Human Rights Situation in Niger
- Political Commitment of Authorities
On 1 March 2022, during an audience to introduce the leadership of the National Commission on Human Rights (NCHR) to the President of the Republic in his office, the President, His Excellency Mohamed BAZOUM, expressed his willingness and determination to support the NCHR in carrying out its mission.
In this regard, two steps were taken by the government, namely the decision to allocate administrative premises to the Commission instead of a rented building and the replenishment of its ageing car fleet with three (3) vehicles. Speaking about the budget, the President promised to take into account the concerns of the NCHR in the 2023 budget.
Also, the proposed supplementary budget of the current year has made provision for the purchasing of a 4/4 vehicle for the Commission. These decisions are aimed at building the technical and operational capacity of the institution in charge of promoting and protecting human rights in Niger.
In addition, the President tabled to the Bureau of the Commission for consideration, his intention and his approval for the review of the Cyber-crime Act in response to a request by a group of civil society entities. For the President, it is unacceptable to call into question democratic gains, such as the law on the decriminalisation of press offences.
In a statement released on 29 October, the Government of Niger also accepted the jurisdiction of the court in accordance with the provisions of Article 34, paragraph 6 of the Protocol relating to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the establishment of an African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights.
Furthermore, a process of total overhaul of the Criminal Code and the Code of Criminal Procedures has been initiated through the setting up of a pluralistic committee comprising the executives of the judiciary, representatives of government institutions, ministerial departments and civil society, tasked with identifying any inconsistencies or unsuitable elements in these texts, correcting any grammatical, spelling or cosmetic errors, carrying out internal adjustments in the articles of these two legislative texts, incorporating any other amendments contained in various laws and in the relevant provisions of international, regional and sub-regional legal instruments to which Niger has signed up and finally proposing any useful amendments to these texts.
- On the Legislative Front
Niger has embarked on a process of adopting three (3) legislative texts, which is a milestone in the promotion and protection of human rights: namely:
- A bill amending and supplementing Act 2019-33 of 3 July 2019, on the fight against cybercrime in Niger, was passed by cabinet on 27 April 2022. This text aims to harmonise the provisions of the law which has been amended and Order 2010-35 of 4 June 2010 on press freedom, notably those enshrining the principle that no journalist may be deprived of his or her liberty in the exercise of his or her duties for offences committed in the line of duty. Better still, it should be noted that, as intended, this amendment widens the scope of freedom and is a major progress because it does away with the prison sentence required in the event of offences committed through electronic communication, such as insult or defamation.
- A bill on enforced disappearances. Passed by cabinet on 24 February 2022, this text criminalises enforced disappearance and provides for 10 to 20-year imprisonment for the perpetrator and life imprisonment in the event the disappeared person dies thereafter.
- The bill defining the rights and duties of human rights advocates was passed by cabinet on 24 March 2022 and transmitted to the National Assembly. The passing of this law will strengthen the legal and institutional frameworks for the promotion and protection of human rights and offer human rights advocates the necessary guarantee for the exercise of their activities, while assigning the government the right to oversee them.
- A draft bill on freedom of demonstration prepared at the initiative of the NCHR as part of its mandate to promote and protect rights and freedoms. After several meetings between the NCHR, police authorities and civil society organisations, it became clear that these interactions should be followed by concrete actions to ensure the effective exercise of this freedom, which has been faced with some challenges. Meanwhile, freedom of demonstration is a constitutional right enshrined in several international instruments, including the UDHR (Article 20) and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (Article 21). Furthermore, according to international law, to be legitimate, restrictions on the right to demonstrate must be provided for by law and limited to what is necessary to protect the public interest, such as the safety of persons and properties, the freedom of other citizens and of demonstrators themselves.
- On the Regulatory Front
- Circular No. 00004MJ/GS/CAB of 22 March 2022 by the Minister of Justice on the handling of civil cases by the office of the public prosecutor and the investigation units. The purpose of this circular is to call on magistrates and heads of investigation units to put an end to the pressure exerted on defendants or their relatives in civil cases in order to satisfy complainants, using tricks to paint the facts reported as criminal ones.
- The lifting of restrictions imposed on some persons deprived of their liberty, such as the prohibition of visits by relatives, counsels and doctors of detainees at the Koutoukalé high security prison. Following the insecurity situation in the Tillabéri region and the outbreak of COVID-19, several measures restricting the rights of detainees in this penal institutions were put in place by authorities. Following the findings of the NCHR’s investigative missions and the receipt of complaints from relatives and detainees, our institution, through the Commissioner, has undertaken an advocacy with the government for the lifting of the restrictions. Thus, during a press conference jointly held on 26 March 2022 by the Secretary General of the Ministry of Justice and the Public Prosecutor, the lifting of the measures was announced.
- Because of slow judicial procedures, there are more remand prisoners than convicted prisoners in those institutions. For example, at the Dosso detention house, in January 2022, according to the report of the head of the NCHR office, out of a total of 282 detainees, there were 111 convicted prisoners against 171 remand prisoners. In Agadez, the Head of the NCHR office pointed out in his report that out of 407 detainees, there were 138 convicts against 269 remand prisoners and in Bilma, out of 56 detainees, there were 11convicts against 55 remand prisoners. At the Tanout detention house in the Zinder region, according to the report by the head of the NCHR office in the community, out of 206 detainees, there were 63 convicts and 143 remand prisoners.
- The dilapidated nature of the premises, some of which date back to the colonial period;
- Problems concerning detainees’ feeding and healthcare;
In addition to the health and security emergencies, the enjoyment of civil rights by the people, especially the right to life and physical integrity, is also compromised by other factors, such as the frequency of road accidents. In 2021, according to provisional statistics of the Niger Road Safety Agency (ANISER) covering a period from January to December 2021, under the Ministry of Transport, made available by the Gendarmerie and the police, there were 1,963 accidents involving 3,605 vehicles, which unfortunately resulted in 62 deaths, including 25 pedestrians, 194 seriously injured, including 43 pedestrians, 636 slightly injured, including 183 pedestrians.
- Economic, Social and Cultural Rights:
The security situation is characterised by loss of lives, internally displaced persons and even refugees, which undermines the effective enjoyment of economic, social and cultural rights.
A case in point is the right to education, which has been adversely affected by the movements of people, leading to the closure of several schools, especially in the Tillabéri region, following the burning down of these schools and the desertion of schools by teachers who received death threats from terrorists.
By way of illustration, according to authorities, at the end of 2020-2021, almost 23.66% of schools in the region were closed due to insecurity. This represents 579 schools out of the 2,247 schools in the region.
According to a report by OCHA Niger dated 20 December 2021, 53,562 children, including 25,828 girls are deprived of their right to education. This situation is due to the activities of non-state armed groups.
Out of the thirteen departments in the Tillabéry region, ten (10) of these departments as well as 21 communes bear the brunt of this situation, which has led to the closure of several schools.
During this period, the right to work was also put to the test for several months or even years. Many young people in the regions of Diffa and Tillabéri slid into unemployment following the ban on motorbike taxis, which was their main activity.
IV/ Health Situation
Malaria is one of the main causes of morbidity and mortality in Niger, particularly among children under five. According to the WHO World Malaria Report 2020, it is estimated that Niger accounts for about 6.3 million cases of malaria, representing 3% of malaria morbidity globally. The same report estimates that Niger accounts for 4% of malaria deaths globally.
Furthermore, since 19 March 2020, Niger has been managing the Covid-19 pandemic just like other countries in the world. From 19 March 2020 to 1 May 2022, a total of 8,924 cases were reported, including 309 deaths.
This report will highlight the epidemiological situation of these two diseases from January to April 2022.
- Malaria Epidemiology: 3 January to 17 April 2022
Malaria is one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality in Niger. The most vulnerable groups are children under 5 and pregnant women.
From 3 January to 17 April 2022, which corresponds to W1 to W15 of the epidemiological surveillance, a total of 464,744 cases of malaria were recorded in health facilities, compared with 698,615 cases during the same period in 2021, representing a 33% decline. The table below shows the malaria situation from week 1 to week 15 of 2022 compared to the same periods in 2021 and 2020.
Table 1: Confirmed cases of malaria from W1-W15 in 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022 among the general population by regions in Niger.
Source: MDO Report
There is a significant decline in cases in 2022 compared to the same period in 2021 and 2019.
Children under 5 years of age are the most affected, representing 241,483 cases from 3 January to 17 April 2022, compared to 330,111 cases over the same period, representing a decline of 26.8%.
Cases among children under 5 years of age represent about 52% of total cases.
In terms of fatality, a total of 352 deaths were recorded during this period compared to 804 cases over the same period in 2021, representing a decline of more than 50%. This decline was recorded gradually over the 3 years during the same period as shown in the table above.
Table 2: Confirmed malaria deaths from W1-W15 in 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022 among the general population by regions in Niger.
Source: MDO Report
The decline over this period has been recorded for the 4 years from 2019 to 2022.
Deaths among children under 5 years of age stood at 247 in 2022 compared to 568 during the same period in 2021, representing a decline of 56%.
Among pregnant women, malaria incidence stood at 18 cases per 1,000 during the 2022 period compared to 20 cases per 1,000 in 2021. In this group, a total of 17 malaria deaths were recorded compared to 11 during the same period in 2021.
The government of Niger, together with its technical and financial partners, is resolutely committed to the fight against this scourge and have made it a priority. This progress is the outcome of multiple efforts in the fight against malaria, notably the distribution of long-lasting insecticide-treated nets on a routine and campaign basis, larval control, intermittent preventive treatment for pregnant women, seasonal malaria chemoprevention for children aged 3-59 months.
However, a lot remains to be done because malaria is still one of the major causes of morbidity in Niger.
That is why the Government of Niger has accepted the introduction of the RTS,S vaccine against malaria for children under 5 years of age as part of the routine immunisation programme. Niger is one of the countries eligible by WHO to benefit from this strategy. The Ministry of Public Health, Population and Social Affairs, in collaboration with partners (WHO, UNICEF, etc.) is considering submitting Niger’s proposal to GAVI to benefit from this vaccine.
- Covid-19 Epidemiology: 3 January to 17 April 2022
In Niger the epidemic has evolved in three (3) main waves:
- The first wave of the epidemic, spread less and lasted from 19 March to 17 June 2020;
- The second wave began in November 2020. It evolved unevenly and lasted until April 2020;
- The third wave of Delta and Omicron variants spread more rapidly. This wave lasted from November 2021 to January 2022.
In 2022, from January to the end of April 2022, a total of 205,347 tests were carried out and out of them, 1,536 cases were confirmed positive for COVID-19 and 35 deaths were recorded.
The Niamey region recorded the highest number of cases with 1,069 representing 69.5% of total cases.
For the past 2 months or so, there has been a sharp decline in the number of daily cases. In view of this situation, the Government has taken decisions to ease Covid-19 measures, especially for air travellers.
V/ Status of Implementation of ECOWAS Texts
A/ The Protocol Relating to the Community Levy (CL)
The situation of the Community Levy was reviewed during the ECOWAS Commission mission to Niger from 26 to 30 April 2021. This mission aimed to assess the implementation of the provisions of the protocol relating to the Community Levy.
B/ Summary statement of the ECOWAS Community Levy from July 2003 to 31 December 2020 and status of reimbursement of the excess amount paid on contribution arrears since 2003.
- Summary statement of the CL from 2003 to 2020:
A reconciliation between the amounts assessed and the amounts transferred into the CL account from July 2003 to 31 December 2020 shows an amount of 34,075,522,048 CFA Francs assessed at the rate of 0.5% (after deduction from the amount assessed on the electricity imported in 2020) against an amount of 28,925,426,156 CFA Francs transferred, leaving a balance of 5,150,095,892 CFA Francs to be transferred.
The figures are summarised in the table below:
|2020||CL 0.5% Assessment||Amount unduly assessed on electricity||Amount received in the account||Amount of CL assessed and not yet transferred|
An analysis of the figures for 2020 in the table above, shows an amount of 4,139,768,933 CFA Francs assessed (including amounts unduly assessed on electricity imported from Nigeria in the amount of 147,201,944 CFA francs) against 568,031,466 CFA Francs transferred, leaving a balance of 3,424,535,523 CFA francs to be transferred for 2020. This balance owed by Niger is due to the fact that a total CL revenue of 3,201,836,834 CFA Francs was collected by the treasury for 2020 but not transferred on one hand, and that some amounts were assessed but not yet collected on the other hand.
Amounts of ECOWAS CL provisionally assessed and transferred from January to March 2021
Summary statement of the ECOWAS CL from July 2003 to 31 December 2020 and Status of reimbursement of the excess amount paid on contribution arrears since 2003.
Summary statement of the CL from 2003 to 2020:
A reconciliation between the amounts assessed and the amounts transferred into the CL account from July 2003 to 31 December 2020 shows that an amount of 34,075,522,048 CFA Francs was assessed at the rate of 0.5% (after deduction from the amount assessed on the electricity imported in 2020) against an amount of 28,925,426,156 CFA Francs transferred, leaving a balance of 5,150,095,892 CFA Francs to be transferred.
|Period||Amounts assessed (1%)||Total amount paid into the ECOWAS CL account||Amounts assessed (0.5%)||Amount of CL received in the account assigned at the rate of 0.5%||Amount of CL assessed and not transferred||Statement of excess payments made by Niger as of 31 December 2021|
|In January 2020, the Republic of Niger went back to the normal CL rate of 0.5%. The excess payment by the end of 2019 stands at: 11,355,480 CFA Francs||13,282,915,849|
|NIGER’S CONTRIBUTION ARREARS (CFA Francs)||3,559,890,483|
|BALANCE OF EXCESS PAYMENT AS OF 31/09/2020 CFA Francs (Update 300419)||4,662,975,698|
(*) 3,992,566,989 CFA Francs = 4,139,768,933 CFA Francs – 147,201,944 CFA Francs
- Status of reimbursement of the excess payment on contribution arrears since 2003
The mission reconciled CL figures at the rate of 1% and at the statutory rate of 0.5% with payments made into our account from 2004 to 31 December 2020 to compute the net balance of contribution arrears and the balance of excess payments. The analysis of Niger’s situation in column F of the table above is summarised as follows:
|AMOUNT OF NIGER’S CONTRIBUTION ARREARS (CFA Francs)||a||3,559,890,483|
|STATEMENT OF EXCESS CL PAYMENTS WITH THE INCREASED RATE OF 1%||b||13,282,915,849|
|BALANCE OF EXCESS PAYMENTS AS OF 31/09/2020 CFA Francs (Update 3004 19)||c =b – a||9,723,025,366|
|Total amount reimbursed as of 31/12/2020||d||4,662,975,698|
|BALANCE TO BE PAID TO NIGER AS OF 31/12/2020||e=c-d||5,060,049,668|
|CL assessed and not yet transferred as of 31 December 2020||f||5,150,095,892|
|Net balance owed by Niger out of the excess payment||g = f – e||90,046,224|
The table shows that the balance of the excess payment has been fully offset by the remaining balance owed by Niger on the CL assessed but not yet transferred, meaning Niger now owes a net amount of 90,046,224 CFA Francs as of 31 December 2020.
Free Movement of Persons and Goods
- Free Movement of Persons
Hampered by Covid for a long time, free movement has now resumed normally. Air and land borders are now open. Moreover, Niger was the first country in West Africa to open its land borders. Also, the borders with Nigeria are also open since Monday 25 April 2022. However, traffic with Burkina Faso is disrupted by terrorist attacks on the roads to Fadan Gourma and Dori.
- Free Movement of Persons
In accordance with the treaty establishing it, ECOWAS aims, among other objectives, to promote cooperation and integration within the context of West African Economic Union in order to improve the standard of living of its citizens, to maintain and enhance economic stability, strengthen relations between Member States and to contribute to the progress and development of the African continent.
To achieve this objective, ECOWAS has embarked on the creation of a common market through:
- Trade liberalisation through the elimination of import and export customs duties on goods and the abolition of non-tariff barriers between Member States with a view to creating a free trade area at the Community level.
- Establishment of a common external tariff and a common trade policy applicable to third countries.
- The abolition among Member States of obstacles to the free movement of persons, goods, services, capitals and to the rights of residence and establishment;
- The creation of an economic union through the adoption of common policies in economic, financial, social and cultural fields and the creation of a monetary union;
- The promotion of joint ventures by private sector organisations and other economic operators, with the conclusion of a regional agreement on cross-border investments;
- The adoption of measures to promote private sector integration by creating a conducive environment to promote small and medium-sized enterprises;
- The creation of a conducive legal environment;
- The harmonisation of national investment codes leading to the adoption of a single Community investment code;
To facilitate the realisation of this common market, ECOWAS has created an instrument known as “Trade Liberalisation Scheme (TLS)”. The TLS is a tool for effective implementation of a free trade area. Its mechanism ensures the free movement of goods without the payment of customs duties and taxes having the equivalent effect as goods imported into the ECOWAS region. Additionally, it helps to cut down on the numerous administrative formalities at the borders.
The TLS was established in 1979 and originally covered only agricultural products and handmade crafts. Since 1990, its scope has been expanded to include industrial products.
In the early 2000s, ECOWAS adopted new texts on the TLS to improve its operation, namely:
- Protocol A/P1/1/03 of 31 January 2003 relating to the definition of the concept of products originating from Member States of the Economic Community of West African States;
- Regulation C/REG.3/4/02 of 23 April 2002 establishing procedures for the approval of originating products to benefit under the ECOWAS trade liberalisation scheme.
- Regulation C/REG.4/4/02 adopting a certificate of origin for products of ECOWAS origin.
These different texts aim to define the concept of originating products and the origin criteria applicable to industrial products. Therefore, all industrial products must comply with these rules of origin to benefit from the TLS.
The TLS is open to any company located and operating in any of the 15 ECOWAS Member States, which intends to export its products within the region. All eligible companies are required to comply with the rules set out in the protocols and regulations governing the TLS. Companies operating in free zones and under any other special economic regime or in any other customs territory are excluded from the benefits of the TLS. All eligible companies may submit an application for accreditation to the National Accreditation Committee (NAC) of the Ministry in charge of Industry for processing and onward transmission to the ECOWAS Commission for validation.
In Niger, the National Committee for the Accreditation of Industrial Products to the TLS was established by Decree No 058/MC/I/PSP/DDI of 7 October 2005 on the establishment, functions, organisation and operation of the National Committee for the Accreditation of Industrial Products to the ECOWAS Trade Liberalisation Scheme (TLS).
The Committee is responsible for reviewing applications for accreditation submitted by companies and making recommendations to the accreditation authority.
The Committee is made up of representatives of the ministries of trade, industry, finance (customs), foreign affairs and cooperation, the ECOWAS National Unit and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
According to a study conducted by ECOWAS in 2016, the ETLS is inadequately used by the various actors due to lack of awareness following its entry into force in the region.
The products traded between Niger and other ECOWAS countries over the last five years are shown in the table below.
Equality of Rights between Women and Men for Sustainable Development in the ECOWAS Region
Women and girls are invaluable human resources for Niger. Women account for 50.6% of the total population. The government recognises that the country’s sustainable development goals can be achieved only with the full participation of women and girls.
Niger is firmly committed to accelerating the empowerment of women and girls and the realisation of their human rights in a country free of all forms of gender-based violence. The country is party to a number of international and regional treaties and conventions that enshrine the rights of women and girls on which periodic reports are regularly produced.
These include the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and its supplementary protocol, the Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) and its supplementary protocols, the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights, the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child, the Convention on the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labour, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
Efforts have been made for the domestication of these treaties and conventions.
At the national level, Niger has put in place a legal framework in line with international standards, which supports the realisation of all human rights of women and girls. Hence:
- the Constitution, under Article 10, enshrines the equality of all before the law. Article 22 stipulates that “the State shall take measures to combat violence against women and children in public and private life”. The Criminal Code of Niger (amended in 2008) imposes heavy penalties for acts of violence in various forms, such as assault and battery, violence, female genital mutilation, breach of decency, sexual harassment and rape.
- The Reproductive Health Act (2006) restates the universal nature of the right to reproductive health. A quota law (25% of women in appointive positions and 10% in elective positions) was passed in 2000 and its implementation decree in 2001. This law was amended in 2014 to increase the quota for elective positions from 10 to 15%. In 2019, the same quota law was amended to increase the quota for elective positions from 15 to 25% and that of appointive positions from 25 to 30%.
For example, the number of women in the previous legislature was 29. This number is currently 51 during the new term that we have started.
- In 2017, the government signed a formal decree of commitment to girls’ enrolment in school and training. This includes the establishment of the legal framework for the protection of girls during their education. The law provides that modern law prevails over customary law; Article 63 of Act 2004-50 of 22 July 2004 stipulates that “customary law applies only to matters relating to personal status, family, divorce, marriage, ancestry or descent (paternity or maternity), inheritance, gifts and wills, and property, and cannot contravene the provisions of international conventions ratified by Niger or those applicable in issues relating to public security or individual freedoms.
With a view to operationalising the aforementioned constitutional principles and translating government’s national and international commitments to gender equity and equality into action, Niger adopted a National Gender Policy (NGP) in 2008, revised and adopted in 2017.
To support the mainstreaming of gender and child protection into plans and budgets, the Government of Niger has established an institutional and organisational framework and developed policies and strategies.
The main policy and strategic documents are: The National Gender Policy (PNG), the National Strategy for the Economic Empowerment of Women (SAEF), the National Strategy for Preventing and Combating Gender-Based Violence and their action plans, the National Programme for the Promotion of Women’s Leadership in Niger, the implementation of the Spotlight Programme, the child protection framework document and the decree on the protection and support of young girls during their education.
A National Observatory for Gender Promotion (ONPG) was set up in 2015 and placed since 2017 under the Office of the Prime Minister to ensure the monitoring and evaluation of and to permanently issue alert on respect for gender equity. Mention should also be made of the establishment of Gender Units in sectoral ministries for gender mainstreaming in all sectors.
A second generation national action plan has been adopted for the implementation of the Women, Peace and Security Agenda for the 2020-2024 period.
The combined efforts of the government and technical and financial partners have helped to reduce the prevalence of some types of GBV. A case in point is female genital mutilation (FGM), the prevalence of which declined from 5% in 1998 to 2% in 2012 as well as child marriage before the age of 15, the proportion of which also decreased from 28% in 2006 to 24% in 2016. The strategies implemented have contributed to rolling back such practices.
The implementation of the National Gender Policy has made it possible to place the empowerment of girls and women at the core of actions through programmes that have offered them more opportunities to enjoy their rights, including women’s participation in the household decision-making process. Public policies intend to provide an effective response to the management of GBV survivors through the implementation and operationalisation of holistic victim management centres in all regional capitals of Niger.
Honourable Speaker, dear colleagues,
To conclude, the delegation of Niger would like to thank the Speaker and all Members of this Parliament and encourages Member States in the fight against Covid-19 by means of their pandemic response plans.