Women’s Political Participation Senior Expert

Advertised on behalf of :

Location : freetown, SIERRA LEONE
Application Deadline :12-Feb-23 (Midnight New York, USA)
Additional Category :Democratic Governance and Peacebuilding
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :National Consultant
Languages Required :
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract :until July 2023

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


UN-Women, grounded in the vision of equality enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, works for the elimination of discrimination against women and girls; the empowerment of women; and the achievement of equality between women and men as partners and beneficiaries of development, human rights, humanitarian action and peace and security.

Women’s leadership and political participation is one of UN-Women’s primary areas of work as mandated in its inception, recognizing the integral role of women in strong and stable democratic processes. Through its Leadership and Governance section, UN-Women works to implement Output 4 of the Entity’s Strategic Plan 2018-21 More women of all ages fully participate, lead and engage in political institutions and processes”.

To promote the leadership and participation of women in all levels of decision-making processes, UN-Women works with a range of stakeholders including women leaders and aspiring candidates, national parliaments and parliamentarians, political parties, media, civil society organizations, and electoral management bodies, in coordination with UN partner Entities, through a wide range of interventions which include: i) support gender responsive legal reforms, and institutional processes to advance women’s participation and representation (including initiatives to address violence against women in politics); ii) build capacities of women leaders and aspiring candidates; iii) promote change of gender norms through advocacy and outreach initiatives targeting communities, political leaders and the media; iv) and support women leaders in gender responsive political institutions.

The Electoral Commission of Sierra Leone on Monday declared June 24 as the official date for the country’s 2023 presidential elections, this calls for multi-stakeholders’ consultations and preparation for a just fair, peaceful, and inclusive election.  Women represent 52% of the Sierra Leone population and by extension the total number of voters in the last 2018 elections.  

The Elections Act has been amended in 2022 and article 58 stipulates: 1) A candidate shall be nominated in writing by 3 voters of the electoral area for which he intends to contest an election and

shall not be nominated in more than one electoral area. 2) For every 3-candidate nominated under subsection 1), one of them shall be female.

In another historic move and in mid-November 2022, a Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment Act was adopted including:

  • At least 30% representation in cabinet
  • At least 30% representation in Parliament
  • At least 30% of all appointments as ambassadors and commissioners
  •  At least 30% of all appointments in Local Councils
  • At least 30% of all appointments in the civil service
  • At least 30% of all appointments in private institutions 
  • Maternity leave extended from 12 weeks to 14 weeks
  • Financial inclusion for women
  • Mainstreaming gender requirement across all sectorial policies and legal frameworks
  • Gender responsive and gender sensitive budgeting
  • The creation of a multi-sectoral gender steering committee to oversee the implementation of the Act

In line with the Government of Sierra Leone request to the UNSG for support to the 2023 electoral cycle and the subsequent Needs Assessment Mission recommendations, UNDP in consultation with MDAs, CSOs and Development partners developed the Elections Project document “Fostering Peaceful, Credible and Inclusive Elections in Sierra Leone 2022-2023” with the aim to support the election management bodies to conduct the 2023 elections. In this context, UNWOMEN is in charge of the implementation of the component related to women’s political participation and a senior national consultant is needed to support the implementation of the work plan during the elections period.


Duties and Responsibilities


Under the direct supervision of UN WOMEN Programme Specialist, the National Senior Consultant will work with the UN Women team to implement and develop women’s leadership and political participation activities.


Under this assignment, the Senior National Consultant will be responsible to undertake the following duties:

Summary of Key Functions:

Support women’s aspirants and candidates’ trainings

  • Liaising with APPWA on the participants lists, dates and locations
  •  Providing trainers with the briefings needed
  • Stakeholder communications
  • Supporting the implementation of the activities
  • Drafting the notes and the reports of the activities

CSOs engagement on women in participation activities:

  • Act as the technical focal point for CSOs in charge of the implementation of the activities related to community engagement 
  • Support the coordination of multi-stakeholder meetings;
  • Produce notes and reports

Technical support to the electoral commission   

  • Support UNDP elections team in the area of women’s leadership and political participation;
  • Participate in the different coordination meetings with UN, civil society and Ministry of Gender and around women’s political participation and leadership.

Duration of the Assignment:

The total duration of this assignment is until 31 July 2023. 

Location of work:

The National consultant will be located at UNWOMEN office with flexible arrangements

Performance evaluation:

Performance will be evaluated against such criteria as: timeliness, responsibility, initiative, communication, accuracy, and quality of the products delivered

Financial arrangements:

Payment will be disbursed in monthly Lum sum upon the satisfactory submission of the deliverables 


Core Values:

  • Respect for Diversity
  • Integrity
  • Professionalism

Core Competencies:

  • Awareness and Sensitivity Regarding Gender Issues
  • Accountability
  • Creative Problem Solving
  • Effective Communication
  • Inclusive Collaboration
  • Stakeholder Engagement
  • Leading by Example

Please visit this link for more information on UN Women’s Core Values and Competencies:  https://www.unwomen.org/sites/default/files/Headquarters/Attachments/Sections/About%20Us/Employment/UN-Women-values-and-competencies-framework-en.pdf

Functional Competencies

  • Good knowledge of gender equality and women’s empowerment, including women’s political participation
  • Good organizational skills and ability to pay close attention to detail.
  • Good communication skills.
  • Demonstrated leadership and personal examples of promoting knowledge management and a professional learning environment.
  • Outstanding networking, team building, organizational and communication skills.
  • Capacity to work with diverse partners including governments, donors, and civil society.
  • Ability to use Microsoft word, excel, e-mail, web-based applications, and databases.
  • Ability to work effectively and harmoniously with people from varied cultures and professional backgrounds.
  • Results based management skills.
  • In-depth knowledge of development issues.
  • Ability to advocate and provide policy advice.
  • Ability in strategic planning, results-based management, and reporting.


Required Skills and Experience


  • Advanced university degree (Master's degree or equivalent) in Gender Studies, Law, Political Science, Sociology, International Relations, Law-related fields, and equivalent practical experiences.


  • A minimum of 8 years (Master’s degree) relevant work experience in the field of gender equality and women’s political empowerment, including proven experience integrating gender equality and electoral cycle.
  • Experience working with multi-stakeholder organizations is essential: governments, International NGO, CSOs, and the UN/ multilateral/bilateral institutions. 
  • Substantive experience in women’s leadership and participation.
  • Experience in programme design and results-based management.
  • Experience with UN electoral assistance processes
  • Experience in working in a multicultural environment.
  • Sound knowledge of international standards on human rights, women’s rights and related instruments.
  • Experience working with multi-stakeholder organizations is essential: governments, CSOs, and the UN/ multilateral/bilateral institutions. 


  • Fluency in oral and written English is required.
  • Working knowledge of other UN languages is an asset

All applications must include (as an attachment) the completed UN Women Personal History Form (P-11), which can be downloaded from http://www.unwomen.org/about-us/employment . Please note that the system only allows one attachment. Applications without the UN Women P-11 form will be considered incomplete and will not be considered for further evaluation.

At UN Women, we are committed to creating an environment of diversity, inclusion and mutual respect. UN Women recruits, employs, trains, remunerates and promotes without regard to race, religion, colour, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, ability, national origin or any other basis covered by the appropriate law. All employment is decided on the basis of qualifications, skills, integrity and the needs of the organisation.

If you need any reasonable accommodation to support your participation in the recruitment and selection process, please include this information in your application.

UN Women has a zero tolerance policy towards behaviour that is inconsistent with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UN Women, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination.  All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to UN Women policies and procedures and the standards of conduct expected of UN Women staff and will therefore be subject to a rigorous reference and background check. (The background check will include verification of academic qualifications and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to complete a background check).

Note: In July 2010, the United Nations General Assembly established UN Women, the UN entity for gender equality and the empowerment of women. The creation of UN Women is part of the UN reform agenda, which aims to pool resources and mandates for greater impact. It merges and builds on the important work of four previously separate parts of the UN system (DAW, OSAGI, INSTRAW and UNIFEM), which focused exclusively on gender equality and women's empowerment.

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