The Side event: Rights-Based Social Protection: From Rhetoric to Action, took place on February 5, 2018 at the UN Head Quarters and was attended by 47 participants. The FES New York representative Ms. Betina Luise Rurup and a Representative from the Zambian High Commission Helen Chifwaka graced the event. This was followed by a presentation on Rights-Based Social Protection: Progress and Challenges. Other presentations included country experiences from Nigeria and Peru in the area of Social Protection as well presentations on monitoring SDG’s and achieving them by 2030. The speakers at the event included; Mr. Vince Chipatuka – Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) Lusaka, Programme Manager, Mr. Oyebisi Oluseyi and Dr. Abiola Tilley-Gyado – Society for Family and Social Protection (SFSP) – Nigeria, Ms. Helen M. Chifwaila – First Secretary Social, Cultural and Humanitarian Affairs, Permanent Mission of the Republic of Zambia to the United Nations and Ms. Rosario Diaz Garavit – The Millennials Movement, Founder and Executive Director. The side event objective, was to highlight the benefits of a right based approach in social protection as a sure way to eradicate poverty and achieve the SDG’s. The meeting also brought together different players in social protection countries who were attending the 56CsocD. The side event was also an opportunity to show case and strengthen the advocacy agenda on the need for a right based approach to social protection.
One of the major trade union responses to globalisation in the 21st Century is the creation of Global Unions. To help the Zambian labor movement rebuild its union density, find a voice and power to influence economic and social policy, this initiative was launched to build strong trade unions through union mergers, starting with labor federations. This initiative, which is being supported by the FES, and will be implemented in several phases which they intend to culminate into a merger congress at federation level. The study tour was a one-week visit to Germany, were the two merging partners Zambia Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) and Federation of Free Trade Unions Zambia (FFTUZ), had dialog meetings with: the German Trade Union Confederation (DGB). Ver.di and Union for Mining, Chemicals and Enery Industries (IGBCE)
The Zambian delegation learnt a lot on how to build consensus on various topics/issues, open information sharing and openness in the merger process. There was a lot of exchange of information, plenary and open discussions to help the Zambian delegation with all aspects of the merger process and therefore more knowledge and experiences. One of the major outcomes of this visit was the importance of information sharing to members through properly established channels as they are critical players. It is clear to see that the visit was beneficial to the Zambian delegation and should help in the current merger process of Zambian trade unions to foster strong union representation and workers’ rights in line with ILO standards.
The Media Institute for Southern Africa (MISA) Zambia has informed policy advocacy on media freedom and freedom of expression over time through its publications and has successfully advocated against statutory regulation of the media, it has also contributed towards media law reform in Zambia including the enactment and implementation of the Independent Broadcasting Authority Act. MISA Zambia produced four state of media reports for 2017, the first two were produced and launched in 2017 while the second two for quarter three and four were produced in the first quarter of 2018 and launched on 27 February 2018 at Cresta Golfview Hotel in Lusaka. The key outcomes of the launch are that:
The 2018 International Annual SASPEN Conference: Re-thinking Social Protection for Inclusive Social and Economic Development Agenda 2030 was held from the 3rd -4th May, 2018 in Johannesburg South Africa. The theme for the conference as well as the coined subthemes provided an opportunity to interrogate a range of issues essential to regional development discourse of social protection and associated disciplines. The participation by colleagues from diverse professions, governments, international agencies and institution’s, researchers and academics civil society and other partners gave the conference a definitive character contributing to wealth of dialogue and debate in the quest to promote social protection in Southern Africa. This participation was representative of many African countries including; Zambia, Zimbabwe, Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania, South Africa, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mauritius, Botswana and Malawi. For More information on the conference can be accessed on the SASPEN website via this link: http://www.saspen.org/home/en/conferences/
The Social protection in the Sub- Saharan Africa: Policy and Legal Frameworks Developments Dialogue Meeting was held on 18th January 2018, in Nairobi Kenya. The meeting brought together participants from the Southern Africa Social Protection Experts Network (SASPEN), as well as representatives from governments, the global coalition for social protection floors and civil society organizations from other regions of Africa. The meeting was organized by the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung- Zambia Office, in collaboration with the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung – Kenya office. Through the meeting, delegates participated in lively debates and engagements on the different policy issues, including the Social Protection Floors, Various instruments by the African Union, as well as national level legal and policy issues. The forum strengthened the capacity of Civil Society Organisations(CSOs) and the governments present to enhance accountability in social protection programming and implementation.