Government and UN jointly hold a workshop on SDG 16

The Ministry of National Planning and Development, UNDP and UNSOM jointly organized a one-day workshop on Sustainable Development Goal 16 – ‘Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions’, as part of wider coordination efforts by the Government of Somaliland. Around 30 stakeholders from the Government, civil society organizations and UN participated in the event.

The Minister of Planning Mr. Awale Ibrahim Shirwa, Attorney General Hassan Ahmed Aden and Jeff Sims, UNSOM Strategic Security Adviser opened the meeting at Ambassador Hotel. Rose Foran, and expert from UNDP, also provided a detailed presentation on SDG 16/16+.

The workshop focused on how best to measure SDG 16, which is a cross-cutting goal that embraces all other SDGs and is aligned with Somaliland National Development Plan II.

“All Government stakeholders are very serious about the implementation of SDG 16 which is aligned with Somaliland’s peace, justice and institutional building goals of NDP II. I think we are the only country that has NDP that is fully aligned with SDGs” Minister Shirwa said.

The Minister added that reforms that are related to SDG 16 are already underway in Somaliland, but he underlined that there is a data gap for measuring the progress of SDG 16 and that the UN and civil society can make an important contribution to the process to ensure that measurement is comprehensive and more accurate.

Jeff Sims of UNSOM said that UN is delighted to discuss with the Government on how to put SDGs and NDP2 forward.

“SDG 16 is cross cutting goal, understanding how to monitor is critical because of the need to inform decision makers within both the Government, civil society and international community” Mr. Sims said.  He added that International Community has indicated its willingness to finance projects in NDP2 and improving the monitoring and evaluation of activities will reinforce accountability measures.

In his opening remarks the Somaliland Attorney General Mr. Hassan Ahmed Adan emphasized importance of SDG 16 for the justice and judiciary sector of Somaliland, stating “UNDP has already provided a lot of support to the justice sector, including infrastructure development and capacity building projects. I don’t think there is an organization that has done more than UNDP for us”.

Mr. Adan also commended the national budget of Somaliland. “Although we receive good support from the international community, we get all running costs, as well as many infrastructure constructions, from the National Budget.  However, the national budget has limited capacity building projects and this is why we need the support of the international community to further strengthen justice intuitions.”

Civil society organizations including SONSAF, Safer World and Fathi Initiatives also provided presentations and support relating to Somaliland progress on SDG 16/16+.