Mozambique: Gender champions wins awards

Mozambique: Gender champions wins awards

Date: October 28, 2014
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Maputo, 9 May: The two-day second national SADC Protocol@Work summit ended in Maputo, Mozambique on 29 April, with winning awards to 13 women and men whose work on the ground won the highest accolades from judges following the presentations of their work to promote gender equality. Seven women and men received awards as runner ups.

Individuals and organisations mainly from the southern region submitted about 30 entries in a various categories, including gender based violence, climate change and sustainable development, women’s rights, leadership, 50/50 campaign, government ministries, media and local government centres of excellence.

Work to finalise the evaluation of entries by government ministries was still under way when the award ceremony took place. The Director of Gender Links (GL) Mozambique said the announcement of the winners in this category would be made as soon as judges finished evaluating.

She explained that in addition to certificates, “the winners will attend the regional SADC summit on gender and development to be held in Johannesburg, South Africa at the end of May this year, with all expenses, including travel, food and accommodation paid by Gender Links.”

The winners from Mozambique will compete with their peers from other Southern African countries who won in the different country summits.

Under the theme, “50/50 by 2015, demanding a strong post 2015 agenda,” the summit brought together, among other people, government officials and representatives of media, municipalities, NGOs and faith based organisations.

Gilberto Macuacua won in the media category. Macuacua won the prize for producing a TV documentary on initiation rites in Mozambique’s northern region. These initiation rites culminated into the rape of young women who passed near the place of the traditional ceremony in the bush. Macuacua describes this as “a violation of human rights, particularly those of women”.

Macuacua who hosts a TV show called “O Homem que é Homem” (The Man who is a Man) said, “I’m happy that my work is being recognised. This reveals that we do it with zeal, but above all, with responsibility and professionalism to promote human rights – the rights of women, men and children”.

He explained that initiation rites are known to be important for the education of men who are ascending into adulthood. But, when they turn into an opportunity for rape, he says “this is unacceptable. It must be condemned and punished in an exemplary way.”

“Our mission as journalists is to denounce this malpractice and promote citizenship and human rights”, Macuacua concluded.

Another winner, nine-year old Corsilia Massinga, a rural widow and mother of five children (three girls and two boys) won the award in the category of emerging entrepreneurship.
“I’m very happy to be one of the winners”, Massinga said.

Massinga embraced the business of reselling products such as firewood, charcoal, foodstuffs, clothes and household utensils, after her husband passed away nearly a year ago. She had to become the sole bread-winner of the family.
“The business is good. I manage to care for my children, dressing them and paying for their school and health care. My dream now is to buy a truck to help me transport, among other things, charcoal and firewood to sell”, she said.


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