Sifisosami Dube welcomes you

Sifisosami Dube welcomes you

Date: October 30, 2014
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Welcome to the October edition of the Roadmap to Equality newsletter. October has been a hive of activity with Alliance network strengthening coalitions at country level. With 2015 around the corner, it is necessary for gender movements to strategically position themselves, and lobby for a strong post-2015 gender equality agenda. This month we focused on highlighting governance issues in the SADC region as Botswana and Mozambique have just held elections. Namibia is due to hold elections next month, while Mauritius and Lesotho also have elections coming up. The need to increase the number of women in political decision-making cannot be overemphasised if the region is to maintain a strong front for a gender responsive agenda beyond 2015.

The SADC Gender Protocol Alliance is pushing the envelope for a stronger post-2015 agenda through stakeholder consultation meetings to finalise targets and indicators for each SADC country. The meetings that started in September brought together the gender ministries, civil society organisations, faith based organisations and researchers. Country tracking of the progress made on implementing the SADC Gender Protocol happened simultaneously through the SADC Gender Protocol Barometer validation process.

Gender movements in Tanzania have succeeded in ensuring constitutional provisions for women’s representation through the 50/50 quota. We applaud the gender movements for the mobilisation, coordination, lobbying and engagement that took place before the finalisation of the Constitution. The Beijing Platform for Action is a forum where this good practice can be linked to the review of the Millennium Development Goals era. We also look at the outcomes from the General assembly held in September which is a milestone towards adopting a new framework for development in the form of the Sustainable Development Goals. A strong gender responsive position is necessary to ensure inclusiveness in global, regional and local development.

Malawi has moved another step forward in implementing the SADC Gender Protocol through aligning the National Gender Policy and Action Plan with the Protocol’s provisions. The SADC Gender Unit and the Malawi Ministry of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare organised a workshop where the Alliance facilitated the proceedings. Malawi becomes the seventh country to align its National Action Plan with the SADC Gender Protocol.

As 2014 draws to a close, it is time to accelerate efforts at all levels to ensure that there is coordination and synergy for post-2015 processes. The SADC region needs to raise the bar through ‘smart’ targets and indicators to ensure that there is inclusive and sustainable development. The continued challenges on gender based violence (GBV) and particularly femicide in the region, requires strong indicators and methodologies on measuring GBV and violence against women. The Oscar Pistorius judgement has left many gender activists doubting the justice system and while the need to prioritise prevention on GBV remains critical. Finally, we are gearing up for the Sixteen Days of Activism against gender violence- an important period to highlight prevention and remind communities that peace begins at home. This year GL will be focussing on empowerment and will soon be sharing a comprehensive calendar of events around the region that will ensure an amplified voice against gender violence.



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