Program Officer, Legal Equality (Africa) - Equality Now

Programme Officer, Legal Equality, Africa

Equality Now seeks a Programme Officer in our Nairobi office to coordinate and develop our work to hold governments accountable and push them to revoke or amend laws which discriminate on the basis of sex.

Equality Now

Women and girls are discriminated against socially, economically, and in the law around the world. Equality Now seeks to bring about legal and systemic change to address gender inequality. To achieve this our programs endeavour to establish and expand laws that protect the rights of women and girls, repeal discriminatory laws, ensure existing good laws and policies are implemented through building sustainable partnerships with others (particularly civil society and other local actors) that will sustain the changes and further the equality agenda.


Scope of Work

The goal of the Legal Equality Programme is to achieve legal equality between women and men, girls and boys. By highlighting and championing individual cases, governments are held accountable for enacting and enforcing laws and policies that uphold the rights of women and girls.


To hold governments accountable to commitments they have made under international and regional treaties, as well as the Beijing Platform for Action, the Sustainable Development Goals, and other instruments for sex equality, including by revoking or amending any remaining laws we highlight as discriminating on the basis of sex and by preventing sex discriminatory legislation from being enacted. The main focus areas of the Programme are:

  • Sex discriminatory laws highlighted in Equality Now’s Beijing +20 report.
  • Discriminatory nationality laws.
  • Rape laws - particularly those that pardon rapists and other perpetrators who marry their victims.


The Programme Officer, Legal Equality (Africa) (PO-LE (A)) will play a pivotal role in coordinating and developing Equality Now’s work to further the Legal Equality programme’s work and the implementation and use of the African Women’s Rights (Maputo) Protocol across the Continent.


African Women's Rights (AWR) Protocol

  • Coordinating the planning and implementation of Equality Now’s work plans and budgets in support of the AWR Protocol
  • Coordinate and implement the impact assessment of the lawyers’ training on the AWR Protocol
  • Coordinating and supervising the externship programme towards ensuring a symbiotic relationship between the externship fellows and the judicial officers that leads to greater utilization, domestication, implementation and enforcement of the rights of women and girls as envisaged in the AWR Protocol
  • Coordinate and implement effective moot courts and public lectures on the AWR Protocol for the benefit of African women and girls
  • Working with members of the SOAWR Coalition and the African Union organs to advance and hold governments responsible for the rights of women and girls rights in Africa

Legal Equality

  • Keeping abreast of human rights issues affecting women and girls in Africa, particularly regarding the above objective and focus areas
  • Researching and preparing evidence on discrimination for national and regional advocacy and lobbying activities in Africa
  • Establishing and maintaining contacts with organisations campaigning for the respect and promotion of women’s and human rights
  • Coordinating advocacy actions with Legal Equality’s partners, including identifying and supporting potential strategic litigation
  • Coordinating and working closely with the Legal Advisor, Africa and all other teams as guided by the Global Lead, Legal Equality. Ensuring clear and consistent communication and coordination with relevant Global Leads and the other campaign teams particularly in relation to regional emerging trends or opportunities in relation to their programme goals.
  • Contributing to the drafting of high-quality technical submissions to public consultations (eg on draft laws, policy, etc) and human rights treaty bodies and mechanisms (eg UN CEDAW Committee, African Commission)
  • Contributing to the collection, collation and analysis of Equality Now’s monitoring and evaluation data to inform learning and action to end discrimination against women and girls and promote protections
  • Contributing to generating Equality Now actions and alerts on campaigns against violations of women’s rights in Africa, particularly as relevant to Equality Now’s Legal Equality work

Media and Communciations

  • Collaborate with Equality Now’s media and communications teams to provide content emerging from our work in Africa

Other duties as reasonably requested

  • Participate in and contribute to Equality Now staff meetings including relevant thematic groups discussions


  • Supervise fellows and interns as required

Team membership

  • Member of the Legal Equality team and the Rights of Women in Africa Campaign

Skills and Competencies


  • A law degree or master’s degree in international law/human rights law or equivalent experience
  • Three+ years’ experience in working on human rights issues or working with women’s movements in campaigning on advocacy regionally in Africa or internationally
  • Knowledge and experience of working in / with coalitions
  • Experience in extensive policy work Experience working with universities and students groups
  • Experience in human rights work focusing on using international human rights instruments to protect the rights of women and girls
  • Knowledge of the African human rights system, the African Union and human rights violations against women and girls, especially in Africa
  • Excellent analytical, conceptual, writing and editing skills and use of computer software (Word, Excel, PowerPoint etc)
  • Excellent communication and advocacy skills
  • A deep profound understanding of and commitment to gender equality in the law
  • Fluent written and spoken English required, French/Swahili also preferred
  • Excellent interpersonal and networking skills
  • Ability to take initiative and work independently with a focus on achieving results
  • Strong team work – working within and across campaigns, program and geographical boundaries
  • Strong planning and organization skills and proven ability to steer and monitor progress against plans and adjust plans in order to deliver on set goals and results


  • Training/facilitation skills
  • Budgeting and financial management
  • Connection to existing networks with feminist and women’s rights organizations in Africa
  • Experience engaging with the media in Africa


Commensurate with experience

Application Process

To apply: Send CV, cover letter and writing sample to by 1 February 2019 with Programme Officer, Legal Equality (Africa) in the subject line. No calls please. Applicants must have the right to live and work in Kenya. For a downloadable PDF of the Job Description, click here.