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Consultant to undertake a Comprehensive Mapping and Analysis of National Laws in Malawi as a Step Towards the Elimination of Discriminatory Laws
|Advertised on behalf of :|
|Location :||Lilongwe, MALAWI|
|Application Deadline :||16-May-21 (Midnight New York, USA)|
|Type of Contract :||Individual Contract|
|Post Level :||National Consultant|
|Languages Required :||English|
|Starting Date :|
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
|Duration of Initial Contract :||45 Days|
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.
Malawi has made some progress, particularly towards strengthening the legal and policy framework relating to gender. Malawi has a strong policy and legal framework on Violence Against Women and Girls and Harmful Practices, has ratified most of the core UN human rights treaties, and has made improvements in the architecture for gender equality and violence prevention, mitigation, and response. In less than a decade, several significant pieces of legislation have been enacted. Recently, the government revised the constitution, aligning previously conflicting definitions of a child between the constitution and the Marriage, Divorce and Family Relations Act, with the intention to end child marriages, and the By-Law framework for Traditional Leaders. A National Strategy on Ending Child Marriages (2018–2023) and the National Action Plan to Combat Gender Based Violence (2016-2021), have been developed to guide national efforts to this end.
However, Malawi continues to face a wide array of other human rights challenges including violence, stigma, and discrimination against women, children and minority groups including persons living with HIV, and persons with albinism. Lack of access to justice, severe prison overcrowding, a narrowing of civil society space and underinvestment in human rights infrastructure and accountability mechanisms continue to limit the most vulnerable from exercising their human rights. While there were attempts to raise awareness on human rights during the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy II (MGDS) implementation, such programmes in general remained uncoordinated, largely due to the absence of a National Human Rights Action Plan (NHRAP). As a result, the MGDS II did not serve as the framework envisioned for Government efforts to promote and protect the full range of human rights in Malawi, nor did it serve as a guide for concrete actions to improve the human rights situation over the many priority areas that were identified.
It is imperative therefore, to undertake a comprehensive review of all the laws, statutes, legislative instruments and other relevant and related government legal frameworks in Malawi. The process will involve a comprehensive analysis of legislative instruments from a gender perspective. This aims at providing an in-depth understanding of the current legal framework and the existence of gaps and discriminatory provisions, with the long-term vision of advocating for law reform to enact new laws or repeal or revise discriminatory legislation. The gender analysis will explore the vast spectrum of laws to assess their gender responsiveness and highlight discriminatory provisions and gaps that would require repeal, amended or enactment trough a law reform process. Gender-sensitive legislation assumes “the integration of a gender perspective into all components of the legislative process—design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation to achieve the ultimate objective of equality between women and men.
The legal analysis will examine discrimination in a broad sense – both direct namely, how the law explicitly treats women and men or girls and boys; and indirect that occurs when a law appears to be neutral on its face but discriminatory effect in practice on women because pre-existing inequalities are not addressed by the apparently neutral measure. The legal analysis will consist of a selective mapping of the national context for purposes of capturing all forms of legal frameworks (the constitution, statutes, legislative instruments, executive orders, administrative regulations, case law and other relevant and related government texts) and not only those which reference gender, women, or girls. The legal frameworks in question will cover all fields and sectors of law and will not be limited to legislation that is specifically related to women, girls or children. Each legal text will be pre-assessed, and a determination made as to how the provisions impact upon the achievement of gender equality. The legal analysis will draw from international standards, such as the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) and the CEDAW Committee’s General Recommendation No. 28 on the Core Obligations of States Parties under Article 2 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women. Concluding observations from the CEDAW Committee, Committee on the Rights of the Child and Universal Periodic Review will also be taken in consideration.
UN Women Malawi is therefore commissioning a study to undertake a comprehensive mapping of Malawi laws with a view to ascertaining gaps in the law, as well as those which are discriminatory towards women and girls.
Duties and Responsibilities
Under the direct supervision of the Head of Programmes, the consultant will undertake the following tasks:
Methodology and Scope of Work:
The consultant will undertake a comprehensive mapping of the legal landscape of Malawi for purposes of capturing all forms of legal frameworks (the constitution, statutes, legislative instruments, executive orders, administrative regulations, case law and other relevant and related government legal frameworks). The legal texts in question will cover legislation that is specifically related to women and girls, as well as other fields and sectors. Each legal text will be analyzed to determine how their provisions impact upon the achievement of gender equality.
The proposed desk review will be followed by a national consultation which brings together stakeholders to review the first draft of the report. The report outline will cover the following:
Below are specific deliverables of the assignment:
Required Skills and Experience