By John Lee.

The United Nations has advertised new positions in Iraq:

(Source: UN)

By John Lee.

The United Nations has advertised new positions in Iraqi Kurdistan:

(Source: UN)

UNDP and UNAMI works with Iraqi High Elections Commission (IHEC) on gender mainstreaming in Iraq’s elections

20 participants from IHEC’s gender unit participated in the first of a series of capacity building activites planned to support IHEC in the period leading up to the upcoming elections.

The workshop, jointly organized by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and UNAMI, in cooperation with IHEC, aimed at enhancing the capacities of the gender team to promote greater political participation of women in elections both as candidates and as voters.

IHEC Chairperson Mr. Maan Al-Hitawi said:

“We believe that women are not only half of population but are the whole society, that is why the strategy of the Council of Commisioner is focusing on supporting the gender team as central part of IHEC structure”.

Speaking on behalf of UNAMI, DSRSG Ms. Alice Walpole opened the workshop and said:

Women’s political participation in Iraq is characterized by progress as well as setbacks. In terms of numerical representation at national and local governance levels, Iraq has some of the highest rates globally.

“The significant representation of women in Iraq’s Council of Representatives (CoR) is largely attributable to the use of a quota (25%), I welcome the recent formation of the IHEC Gender committee aimed at mainstreaming women’s participation throughout the several phases of the electoral process, devising tailor made interventions and promoting gender equality within IHEC’s internal structures, procedures and policies”

Speaking on behalf of UNDP, Country Director Mr.  Mounir Tabet said:

“The gender gap is one of the main issues that UNDP took into consideration in developing its support for the delivery of free, fair and transparent elections. We are aiming to fully support IHEC’s gender engagement strategy and to empower the role of women in elections as candidates, political activists, voters, CSO actors, throughout the electoral cycle”.

Facilitated by UNDP’s gender specialist, the workshop reviewed the electoral processes from a gender perspective, referring to the importance of building gender classified data and to learn from good practices of promoting women participation in electoral processes.

After the workshop, participants will hold a one-day meeting targeting gender units in line ministries in order to collaborate and coordinate efforts of raising awareness of women and men in the public sector and encouraging more active participation in the elections.

Additional workshops will be facilitated by UNDP and IHEC’s gender team at the national and provincial levels. These workshops will also suppot the gender unit to conduct a review of election materials from a gender perspective and to help the team establish a social media platform to promote greater participation of women in the upcoming elections.

UNDP and UNAMI are jontly planning to support IHEC’s gender team  activities In priority areas of gender mainstreaming the election process with focusing on encouraging active women participation in election and enhacing capacities of IHEC’s gender focal point in governorates to ensure gender mainstreaming in electoral process.

(Source: UNDP)

By John Lee.

The United Nations has advertised new positions in Iraq:

(Source: UN)

In continuing of training session conducted in April-May 2017 for the potential construction companies throughout Iraq, UNDP Country Office Iraq is planning to conduct another training session for the potential Construction Firms/Companies as per the following details:

  1. Training Session for Sinjar Bidders – 3 & 4 April 2018 – Baghdad
  2. Training Session for Baghdad & other areas – 5 April 2018 – Baghdad
  3. Training Session for Erbil & other areas– 9 & 10 April 2018 – Erbil

All registered bidders are kindly requested to send the following information to the UNDP focal point mentioned below latest by 31 March 2018. The requests received after due date and time will not be entertained.

  1. Name of the company;
  2. Name of Representative/s (Maximum of two person allowed to take part in the training session).
  3. Atlas E-Tendering registration number.

Interested firms/companies are kindly requested to provide the relevant information to UNDP Focal person Raghad Ali at email raghad.ali@undp.org.

The training venue for all the above trainings will only be communicated to the bidders who will provide the above information and are registered with the Atlas E-Tendering portal of UNDP.

(Source: UNDP)

Launching the capacity building program on “Government-Wide Institutional Performance Management”

The first in a series of capacity building workshops has been concluded in Erbil, Iraq.

With the ultimate aim of helping Iraq reinforce its accountability and efficiency mechanisms, the workshop’s objective was to improve the Iraq public sector readiness to apply a new model of performance management entitled “Iraqi Government-Wide Institutional Performance Management Model”.

The model was developed by the Council of Ministers Secretariat (CoMSEC), with UNDP technical support, in consultation concerned public sector instititions in Iraq,  and is based on the “European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM)” standards”.

It was endorsed by the government in March, 2017 for piloting in three ministries for validation: Youth & Sports, Electricity and Commerce.  Lessons learnedduring the piloting phase completed in Nov, 2017 were taken into account to further develop the model, which will be scaled up in May, 2018 across public sector institutions.

This series of capacity building workshops target the “Performance Management Teams” at the participating public sector Institutions, who will be entrusted with applying the “Iraqi Government-Wide Institutional Performance Management Model” at the ministries they represent.

The first workshop targeted 31 participants from the Ministries of Agriculture, Water Resources, and Industry and Minerals, and CoMSEC.  Participants discusssed the fundamentals of institutional performancemManagement and went through the “Excellence Journey”.  The workshop implementation strategy was based on the fundamentals of adult learning, where peer and experiential learning combined with high degree of participates’ involvement took place.  The workshop activities were divided between methodological presentations and practical exercises.  The contents built on the insight and experience available in the European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM)”.

Addressing the workshop participants, the Head of Control and Audit Directorate at CoMSEC, Mr. Riyad Fadil, emphasised the fact that the government is closely monitoring the development and deployment of the model and looking forward to seeing the results of replication across all public sector institutions at the federal Level.  He also added that, “Our team is ready and willing to provide all the support possible to advance this initiative further”.

The Iraq Public Sector Modernization Program Manager, Mr. Hisham EL Azzouni, highlighted that “This is a nationally-owned and led initiate that is currently supported by UNDP”.  He also added that “The model isn’t an end in itself, but a mean for improving the performance of public sector in Iraq”.  He also assured the participants that IPSM-UNDP will spare no effort to make the model a reality and will provide GoI with the support they need in this regard.

The implementation of this program comes within the framework of IPSM-UNDP support to GoI to have more efficient, accountable and participatory governance at national and sub-national  levels.  The program aims also at improving the administrative systems at federal and sub-natopnal level, coupled with strengthening the sub-national governance and decentralised service delivery systems through enhanced participatory processes.

(Source: UNDP)

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Iraq launched a trilingual mobile application for iOS and Android to become the first ever UNDP Country Office to have such an application and one of a few within the UN community worldwide.

UNDP Iraq’s Communications Unit led the development process of this application with support on information technology from the Regional Hub.

The Unit explained:

Out of over 37.2 million Iraqis, more than 30.2 million are mobile users*. The UNDP Iraq mobile application was developed not only to keep Iraqi users well informed of UNDP’s support to the people of Iraq, but also to reach out to a wider global audience.

“With its user-friendly design, the application is very informative in terms of highlighting UNDP’s work and impact as well as the country’s progress towards respective Sustainable Development Goals.

The mobile application features news, impact stories, publications, a media library, infographs and visualized data in Arabic, Kurdish and English languages. It is now available for free download from App Store and Google Play.

(Source: UNDP)

UNMAS Iraq ‘Clearance Mission’ Seen as ‘Tipping Point’ Between Past Conflict and a Normal Future

Lives and livelihoods in Iraq’s liberated areas are being restored at long last.

In Fallujah, as many as 1,800 vehicles and 100 pedestrians per hour can cross the re-opened ‘new bridge’ linking Baghdad with Al-Anbar Province. The fibre optic cable connecting more than 3,000 customers with Baghdad has been restored. The Jadidah fuel station, which had been closed for three years, now pumps an average of more than 31,000 litres for 300 vehicles per day.

In Mosul, the Al Qaysoor Water Treatment Plant has resumed providing clean and safe water to more than 300,000 customers across 34 service areas. The High Court can access deeds to validate land claims of residents returning to Ninewa Province. Valuable medical equipment, removed for safekeeping, awaits rehabilitation of a hospital in Mosul.

None of this progress would have been possible without infrastructure first being cleared of the explosive threats posed by debris of past conflicts and devices left by retreating ISIL forces, thus allowing the Government of Iraq, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and the International Community to carry out the necessary rehabilitation work.

“We had almost lost all hope,” said Mr. Ali, manager of the Jadidah fuel station, speaking for its 20 employees. “We expected that the station would be blown up,” and it might well have been. United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS)-directed teams safely removed 34 improvised explosive devices (IEDs) weighing a total of 435 kg from the station premises. “You (UNMAS) gave us our jobs back,” he said.

“We eliminate threats along roads, under bridges, from power and water plants, from schools, from critical infrastructure, so that those displaced by conflict can return to their homes, begin again to work, to educate their children, to contribute to society, to live a normal life,” said Pehr Lodhammar, UNMAS Senior Programme Manager, prior to the Kuwait International Conference for the Reconstruction of Iraq.

Lodhammar says conference outcomes will help UNMAS to set priorities working in collaboration with the Government and other agencies supporting Iraq’s reconstruction. All infrastructure is important, but the sequencing of clearance missions itself is complex and the UNMAS top priority, Lodhammar says. “What comes first on our list in turn affects all other rehabilitation and reconstruction efforts ‘downstream’,” he says. “So, we always begin with a joint-assessment to establish our priorities.”

He cites the current UNMAS work to clear Fallujah’s power grid serving two areas outside of the city. As of December 2017, UNMAS-directed teams had searched nearly 34 km² along power lines and cleared 580 explosive devices. When the UNMAS work finishes, repair crews can begin restoring power to as many as 60,000 people and seven schools.

UNMAS-directed partners working at the community level, village level, even the ‘well level’ make a difference on a daily basis, Lodhammar says.

In Al Bokald, villagers spoke of the ground as their enemy. “We could not walk for fear that something would explode in our faces,” said one. Today, with explosive devices cleared, 20 families again have access to a well and water for their own needs and to grow their crops.

The story confirms for Lodhammar the need, primacy and urgency of the clearance mission as shared by all agencies engaged in Iraq’s reconstruction. “We have to do our job, safely, quickly and well so others can do theirs.”

In 2018, the mine action sector requires 216 million USD to respond to the rehabilitation efforts of retaken areas and critical needs in access to basic and municipal services, education and health of returning civilians. In the Reconstruction and Development Framework (RDF) presented at the Kuwait Conference, the Government of Iraq will prioritize the clearance of explosive hazards to enable the reconstruction of Iraq and support of accountable governance, reconciliation and peace building, social and human development and economic development.

(Source: UNAMI)

Ambassador Silliman and Lise Grande of UNDP Visit the Ninewa Plains

Ambassador of the United States to Iraq Douglas Silliman joined the Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary General and UNDP Resident Representative Lise Grande for a visit to several sites in the Ninewa Plains to highlight the U.S.-UN partnership in supporting the Iraqi government’s efforts to help its most vulnerable people return home following the liberation of their territory from ISIS.

During his visit to the historically Christian towns of Al Hamdaniya and Karamless, home to Syriac Catholic and Chaldean Catholic communities respectively, Ambassador Silliman reaffirmed the U.S. government’s commitment to supporting the UNDP Funding Facility for Stabilization (FFS).

Since 2015, the United States has provided $190.3 million to the FFS, which includes a recent $75 million contribution, portions of which the United States has specifically set aside for projects in the Ninewa Plains.  The United States also pledged an additional $75 million contribution for 2018.

The U.S. government also plans to fund up to $39 million to non-governmental and private organizations to help stabilize ethnic and religious minority communities in the Ninewa Plains and western Ninewa, which will bring our total funding for stabilization activities up to $300 million.

Separately, the United States has contributed more than $1.7 billion in humanitarian assistance since 2014 for conflict-affected Iraqis who were displaced by the ISIS threat.

“We are committed to supporting UNDP stabilization projects like these until all displaced Iraqis can return to their liberated, stabilized areas,” said Ambassador Silliman at the reopening of the Al Hamdaniya Hospital, which was looted and vandalized during the ISIS occupation before its initial rehabilitation by UNDP.  The U.S. government recently approved $2.6 million to fund UNDP’s further rehabilitation of the hospital and the purchase of necessary medical equipment.  The Ambassador added, “As I look at this facility, I see it as a symbol of hope that more peaceful and prosperous days lie ahead for the people of this community.”

UNDP Resident Representative for Iraq Lise Grande said, We are very grateful for the contribution of the U.S. government.  UNDP is currently implementing more than 1,000 projects across Ninewa Governorate.  Progress is tangible; electricity grids are starting to work, water systems are being repaired, schools are opening, health centers are functioning and people are getting back to work.  With continued support, we can accelerate this critical work and help bring hundreds of thousands of displaced Iraqis back home.”

The visit also included meetings with Syriac Catholic and Chaldean Catholic religious leaders and a tour of the Karamless primary health care center, another UNDP stabilization project that the United States will be partially funding.

The United States is committed to ensuring that its humanitarian assistance and stabilization funding is reaching Iraq’s most vulnerable communities, including the ethnic and religious minorities who suffered under ISIS occupation.  With support from the U.S. government and other international donors, the United Nations’ stabilization projects are helping displaced Iraqis from all backgrounds rebuild their homes and communities in the liberated areas.

(Source: U.S. Embassy in Iraq)

By John Lee.

The United Nations has advertised new positions in Iraqi Kurdistan:

(Source: UN)