When a political environment enables communities to drive justice and security reform and institutions to protect and promote human rights, the rule of law creates an essential foundation for sustainable peace. UNDP is committed to developing politically sound rule of law and human rights programmes by framing our technical engagement within political processes. UNDP supports national partners to: develop holistic programming based on conflict analysis, mobilize resources, and leverage political backing in support of their aims to strengthen the rule of law and human rights. We help to create mechanisms that enhance accountability and public participation, so that people have a voice in the creation and implementation of the laws that govern them.
The Global Focal Point for Rule of Law (GFP), formerly known as the Global Focal Point for Police, Justice, and Corrections in the Rule of Law in Post-Conflict and other Crisis Situations, is a UN platform co-chaired by UNDP and DPO. The GFP is designed to enhance collaboration in the provision of rule of law assistance to address and prevent violent conflict, protect human rights, and restore justice and security for conflict-affected communities. Since 2012, the GFP has brought together partners from across the UN system to pursue shared objectives, including UNODC, UN Women, UNHCR, OHCHR, the EOSG, UNOPS, and others.
In 2018, the GFP provided joint support to 15 countries and territories: Burkina Faso, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, The Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Iraq, Liberia, Libya, Mali, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan (Darfur), Yemen, and Kosovo*. In addition, the GFP held a workshop in Uganda on joint programming, bringing together rule of law practitioners from over 9 conflict-affected contexts.
Alongside the reforms undertaken by the United Nations Development System and the United Nations Peace and Security Architecture in 2018, the Global Focal Point for the Rule of Law commissioned an independent review of its structures and procedures to identify key areas for improvement. The review recognized that the GFP has helped to leverage the comparative advantages of different UN entities to reduce duplication of efforts and increase efficiency in the field. It also noted that the GFP has been particularly valuable in mission transition settings, where peace operations are drawing down and responsibilities are being handed over to national partners and the UN Country Team. In addition, the review found that the GFP will need to receive dedicated financial and administrative resources to continue to play its important role in coordinating UN rule of law efforts. To take forward the review’s recommendations, the GFP has established coordinating platforms and working groups on i) re-thinking management structures at headquarters, ii) unblocking inter-operability challenges in the field, and iii) ensuring sustainable financing.
*References to Kosovo shall be understood to be in the context of Security Council resolution 1244 (1999)