Female representation low in regional governance structures: Sioka

08 Mar 2018 20:10pm
REHOBOTH, 08 MAR (NAMPA) – Although Namibia has made strides in women representation in politics at national level, it still has low representation in regional governance structures, Minister of Gender Equality and Child Welfare Doreen Sioka has said.
Sioka made the remarks in a speech read on her behalf during the International Women’s Day commemoration held in Rehoboth on Thursday.
She said in the 2016 Regional Council elections, 16 per cent of the councillors in the 121 constituencies were women. Two regional councils - Omaheke and Zambezi - have no female councillors.
Seven regional councils each have only one woman on their councils. They are the Hardap, ||Kharas, Kavango East and Kavango West, Kunene, Ohangwena and Omusati regions.
The Erongo, Oshana and Oshikoto regional councils each have two women. Khomas and Otjozondjupa are the regions with the most women representatives, with women occupying four of the 10 constituency seats in Khomas and three of the seven seats in Otjozondjupa.
“This is a far cry from the 50 per cent target in Namibia’s National Gender Policy, the National Gender Plan of Action, the Southern Africa Development Community Gender Protocol and several other national policies or regional and international instruments which Namibia has ratified,” said Sioka.
Regional councils are tasked with the planning and development of their regions, which requires the active voice of both women and men in the decision-making process, she said.
Every year on 08 March, Namibia joins the international community in commemorating International Women’s Day.
In Namibia, the day is commemorated in every region through the Minister of Gender Equality’s regional offices. The aim is for women of all walks of life, despite national boundaries, cultural or social status, to celebrate their roles in the socio-economic development of the country.
The country also celebrates National Women’s Day on 10 December annually.