What are the anti-corruption instruments in legislation? Why should law drafting be gender neutral? Why is the reform of maritime law important for the blue economy of Puntland? These were just a few of the themes addressed during the 2-day legal drafting workshop organised in June by EUCAP Somalia’s Field Office in Garowe.
15 participants (8 men and 7 women) from the Puntland Ministry of Justice, Religious Affairs and Rehabilitation attended the introductory training tailored for staff and interns from the Legal Drafting and Legal Reform Department. The workshop aimed to enhance the knowledge of new staff on various aspects of legal drafting.
All the participants were graduates from Puntland State University and the workshop reflected the college, were participants openly express themselves on various subjects. Topics like the importance of gender-neutral drafting of legislation created a passionate discussion. The female participants especially used the opportunity to emphasize the importance of the subject, referring to social problems like the prevalence of domestic violence. The male participants listened to the arguments and seemed to be a bit surprised by the passionate reactions of their colleagues.
“I especially liked the topic of gender balance in legal drafting. I find gender equality important. I would like to have more workshops like this,” said Mariam, one of the participants. Her fellow participant Nimo was also very satisfied with the content of the training and suggested that the next EUCAP workshop should discuss leadership in the law drafting environment. Umuscado Nour, the Legal Assistant of the Field Office Garowe and moderator in the workshop, also assessed that a follow-up workshop with new themes could be very beneficial for the participants.
The enthusiasm and eagerness to learn made an impression on EUCAP’s Legal Adviser, Dariusz Sielicki.
“These people are working each day with laws but until now a law was just a document for them. Now they know that there is a whole world behind that document,” said Sielicki. His notion was also shared by Abdullahi who stated that when he goes back to the Ministry, he will have the knowledge to do his job.
The workshop also supported the reorganization process of the Puntland Ministry of Justice, Religious Affairs and Rehabilitation. EUCAP Somalia is involved especially with the capacity building aspect of the process. Puntland is reviewing its legislation, amending old laws and drafting new ones. The Legal Unit of the Field Office Garowe is mentoring the interns of the Law Drafting Department and three of them are a month away from presenting to the Minister their first product: a reviewed and amended Puntland Anti-Piracy Law.