Women can lead as well as male counterparts: Ekandjo

29 Aug 2013 09:50
WINDHOEK, 29 AUG (NAMPA) - The implementation of 50/50 gender representation in decision-making positions is “a call from the universe for people to awake to the truth that women can lead just as well, or better, than their male counterparts”.
This was said by Mobile Telecommunications Limited (MTC)’s Chief Human Capital and Corporate Affairs Officer, Tim Ekandjo at the official opening of the Ongwediva Annual Trade Fair (OATF) last Friday.
The past weekend was a hive of activity in northern Namibia, with events such as the Heroes Day commemoration at Omugulugwombashe on Monday, the commencement of the OATF and the Olufuko festival, which started at Outapi in the Omusati Region on Monday.
Just before the Heroes Day event, the Swapo-Party launched its amended party constitution at the Omugulugwombashe Heritage Site. The amendments of the Swapo-Party constitution were amongst other things aimed at bringing about 50/50 representation of men and women in all party organs and structures.
The decision puts Swapo in line with the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Protocol on Gender and Development, which, amongst other things, encompasses SADC governments’ commitments made in all regional, global and continental instruments for achieving gender equality.
The 50/50 gender representation requirement is also referred to as the ‘zebra-list’ system.
Ekandjo said people should not confuse a leadership title with the ability to lead because anybody can demonstrate leadership even though they are not in a position of leadership, adding that women all over the world have been doing that for many years.
“If we claim that women have no leadership exposure at national level, then we should stop wasting time predicting how it will not work, but use that time and energy to give them the necessary exposure, because if we don’t do it, who will?,” he noted.
Ekandjo advised women not be distracted by “prophets of doom” and by those who doubt their abilities.
“If one's internal landscape reflects lack of confidence, inability and fear, then that person's world will mirror that,” he indicated.
Speaking to Nampa on Tuesday, the Executive Director of Women’s Action for Development (WAD) Veronica de Klerk said women should come out of the shadows and get training on how to run for public offices.
“It is our time as women to show the nation and the world at large that we can do this. Women should not be afraid of anything,” she stated.
De Klerk further indicated that she is concerned about the fact that women are quiet about the implementation of the protocol.
“It is their time to come out and show the world that women can also be leaders,” she said.