Gender equality is everyone's obligation


09 March 2018 | Local News

The ministry of information communication and technology (MICT) regional office hosted a community debate in Swakopmund recently.

Speaking at the open­ing of the debate the mayor of Swakopmund, Paulina Nashilundo, said that addressing gender ­discrepancies should not only be the responsibility of the government.

“Most governments all over the world have adopted­ policies that advocate for the recognition of gender equality at all levels of society.

“We in Namibia are no exception either, as our lawmakers have since adopted policies that bracingly recognise the unequi­vocal role of women­ in our society.

“More than 50% of our populations are women, and with this figure in mind, we can no longer afford to live in a fragmented society where the majority members are ostracised by the system,” she said.

Six participants, Marchell Minnie, Alloys Veseevete, Marcella Katjojova, Max Leonard, Kangala Matheus and Susan Salom-Kamati, discussed various views on whether gender equality plays a key role in develop­ment.

Salom-Kamati argued that “everyone, regardless of socio-economic background, ethnicity, ­religion, educational background and gender, has the right to basic things: Access like health­care, equal education ­opportunities, access to fair and equal wages, access­ to housing and health care.”

Matheus said that gender equality is key in reaching­ the sustainable development goals of Vision 2030.

“If we don't implement gender equality it also has effects on other goals like equal education, decent work and poverty,” he said.

Leonard opposed this view, saying that women have certain character traits which could be harmful to the economic development.

“According to my own understanding, women are very sensitive individuals. Every decisions that they make are made through emotions. If they are in a position of making critical decisions, it can be a risk to development,” he said.

Salom-Kamati countered­ Leonard's notion, as she believes that women's emotional state of being can be beneficial towards economic development if it is viewed in a positive light.

“Women being sensitive and reasoning with emotions means that we have care for the nation and that does not mean that we are weaker. We are equal to men and bring a positive contribution to the nation,” she said.

MICT also officially launched its YouTube page at the event.

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