Hon Rosalia Nghidinwa, Minister of Gender and Child Welfare in Namibia paid a courtesy call to Secretariat’s Gender Unit. The Minister was accompanied by a high level delegation from the Namibian High Commission to Botswana and from the Ministry of Gender and Child Welfare. The Minister and her delegation were on a benchmarking mission to Botswana Government and SADC Secretariat.
The purpose visit was to engage with the SADC Secretariat Gender Unit on the SADC Gender Programme with a view to strengthen alignment with the Namibia Gender agenda. The Gender Unit shared an overview of the SADC Gender programme and priority interventions in line with the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan (RISDP) and the SADC Protocol on Gender and Development.
The Gender Unit also shared the achievements and challenges faced by the Regional Gender programme.
The Minister commended the SADC Secretariat for the excellent coordination and facilitation of Member States in the implementation of the SADC Gender commitments. She said key gender concerns that affect SADC Member State’s including Namibia are such as increased incidences of Gender Based Violence, limited women’s economic empowerment and declining representation of women in politics and decision making among others. She urged all key stakeholders including the SADC Secretariat and Member States to put in place robust measures to accelerate implementation of the set targets.
The Minister the minister suggested that Member States should be encouraged to engage in more exchange programmes to share lessons and best practices on gender equality and women’s empowerment with a view to replicate them.