SMACO & STRATEGY
SMACO was created by a presidential decree in 2013, which established the office as the authority to coordinate humanitarian mine action activities in Western Sahara, east of the berm, in line with International Mine Action Standards. In cooperation with well-known international organizations (such as the United Nations, SLG, DDG and NPA), SMACO participates in the planning, implementation, follow-up and reporting of all demining activities conducted east of the berm. SMACO is also the point of contact for all reporting of mine/ERW accidents and they cooperate for the collection, coordination and dissemination of this information to reach people who are living or travelling through Western Sahara, east of the berm. SMACO is additionally responsible to support and coordinate all other mine-related activities conducted by local and international NGOs, such as the dissemination of mine risk education to the local and nomadic population, as well as the provision of assistance to survivors of mines/ERW accidents.
A developed Western Sahara, impact-free from mines and explosive remnants of war, where all people, including those affected by mines/explosive remnants of war accidents, enjoy a free and safe life.
SMACO, which was founded by presidential decree, plans, coordinates, facilitates and follows up all Mine Action activities in Western Sahara in accordance with National Legislations, Local and International Standards, taking into consideration the implications of the refugee and high contamination situation. SMACO embeds mainstreaming of gender and diversity, humanitarianism and accountability into their operations, with a primary focus on Victim Assistance and advocacy in addition to the other Mine Action Pillars.
Goals to achieve Vision and Mission
- To establish a basis for advocacy towards local, national and international partners.
- To provide partners with reliable information regarding victims of mine/ERW accidents.
- To develop a framework as a mechanism for communicating and following up the obligations and duties of mine action actors in the Territory of Western Sahara.
- To create the basis for a comprehensive legal framework for the rights of victims of mine/ERW accidents.
- To be in line with UN Mine Action Strategy 2019-2023, SMACO will accomplish the independent coordination of mine action activities in Western Sahara considering the local situation
Strategic Objectives to achieve Goals
To accomplish these goals, SMACO identified the following objectives:
1.1. To establish a sustainable and constant funding of SMACO by 2020.
1.2. To implement an efficient and effective communication with national and international
organisations by 2019.
2.1. To establish an effective mechanism for accidents and victims’ data collection and sharing it with partners according to the SMACO Data Protection Policy by 2019.
3.1. To establish a national employment policy for mine action activities by 2023.
4.1. To create a discussion platform (think tank) to establish a national victim rights protection policy by 2022.
5.1. To fully implement a professional management structure within SMACO by 2021.
5.2. To insure availability of human resources to comprehensively manage mine action by 2020.
Strategies to achieve Strategic Objectives
1.1.1. To approach potential donors and partners that are able and willing to provide a steady funding stream.
1.2.1. To develop a communication plan to approach local and international actors.
1.2.2. To establish a network of peers for applying a “best practice” approach to international organisations.
2.1.1. To involve the relevant partners in facilitating data collection.
3.1.1. To consult relevant international and local actors with regards to local legislation and regulations as well as international law.
4.1.1. To conduct advocacy and lobbying activities at the local level to show the importance of the survivors’ rights and protections.
5.1.1. To provide appropriate management capacity enhancement tools for SMACO personnel.
5.2.1. To develop and implement appropriate tools for an inclusive human resources management.
The work of SMACO contributes to enable the following Sustainable Development Goals:
- SDG 1 (No Poverty) and SDG 2 (Zero Hunger). Route verification and clearance enable the local and nomadic population to move safely with their herds in search for water and vegetation. In addition, verified and cleared routes can also be used for transportation of goods, including food. Furthermore, SMACO is contributing to increasing awareness among the nomadic population about the threat posed by mines/ERW to their animals, on which they are very dependent in this harsh desert environment.
- 2. SDG 5 (Gender Equality). SMACO ensures that gender concerns are mainstreamed into all components of the programme. This is mainly achieved through the fair employment of women, and representative information on the threat and impact of mines and ERW in the Territory of Western Sahara, east of the berm. Importantly, gender mainstreaming is promoting the development of non-discriminatory laws and policies at the local level.
- 3. SDG 8 (Decent Work and Economic Growth). UNMAS; together with its partners UNMAS and contractors (Commercial companies as well as NGOs) are a source of decent and dignified employment for the local population. By providing sustainable jobs and promoting equality among its employees, SMACO contributes to economic growth in the local society.
- 4. SDG 15 (Life on Land). SMACO is contributing to the clearance of contaminated areas is used by local communities’ construction, wells, seasonal grazing and herding of their flocks.
- 5. SDG 16 (Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions). By destroying stockpiles of anti- personnel mines, clearing minefields and cluster strike areas as well as road clearance and verification, UNMAS WS enabled safe passage for MINURSO military observers and civilian logistical support. These actions facilitated the Mission’s mandate to monitor the ceasefire.
- 6. SDG 17 (Partnerships for the Goals). By developing sustainable partnerships and working in cooperation with both local and international partners, SMACO is contributing to a developed Western Sahara free from the impact of mines and ERW.