Pacific women leaders selected under US program

The U.S. Embassy has announced the selection of two women to participate in the prestigious International Visitor Leadership Program.

Edith Namba, Papua New Guinea, and Florence Joel, Solomon Islands, will take part in the program on U.S. Justice System - Protecting Women and Children, taking place from March 24th –April 14th 2018.

Namba, a clinical unit supervisor for extension service in Mount Hagen Provincial Hospital in the Highlands of Papua New Guinea, is a gender-based violence (GBV) specialist with a strong network of nongovernmental organisations.

She works closely with the provincial health authority, hospital and other partners in providing Lukautim Pikinini Act (LPA) training to Hagen central village court magistrates and clerks of the law and order justice sector agencies.

This exchange will help her understand how U.S. justice system works to help women and girls access help and protection and how it compares to the system in Papua New Guinea.  

Namba will bring back experiences and knowledge to support the work she does in the Western Highlands Province.

She is joined by Pacific Island counterpart, Joel, principal legal officer for the Department of the Public Prosecutor in the Solomon Islands.

Joel manages casework for a team of 15 prosecutors overseeing five sections, including the sexual assault and family crime unit, and is responsible for providing technical support and training.

Joel also provides technical advice to the parliamentary committee that scrutinises bills before Parliament and, with knowledge from this exchange, she will be able to raise concerns if women’s and children’s issues are not integrated into legislation in Solomon Islands.

Joel said participating in this program will provide her with wider exposure to the U.S. justice system which is much more vigorous and effective than that in the Solomon Islands.

Joel and Namba will join 10 participants from around the world and visit a number of federal, state and local organisations dedicated to helping women and children access the U.S. justice system.

(Florence Joel of Solomon Islands and Edith Namba of Papua New Guinea pose with Ambassador Ebert-Gray)

Press release