GRB implementation to address gender imbalances slow

18 Apr 2018 18:30pm
WINDHOEK, 18 APR (NAMPA) – The Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare (MGECW) said Namibia has high income inequality between men and women and the implementation of the Gender Responsive Budget (GRB) can help to identify and find solutions to address gender imbalances.
This is contained in the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR)’s democracy report on Women in the Budget for March 2018.
According to the report, analysis conducted for the past two financial years show only nine out of 35 Offices, Ministries and Agencies (OMAs) have considered implementing the GRB guidelines.
However, the MGECW targeted 14 OMAs to implement the guidelines in the last financial year.
“GRB is being viewed more broadly as a tool for addressing gender equality through the budget process,” states the report.
The guidelines are meant to identify gender imbalances and design specific policies, plans and budgets to address the issue of inequality, according to the IPPR report.
GRB guidelines cemented by the Namibian government’s policy to focus on gender imbalances must not be understated, the report noted.
The MGECW issued GRB guidelines to OMAs as per the 2014 Cabinet decision to include gender into their budgeting activities.
But the low turnout of OMAs on the implementation of the guidelines shows that much is left to be desired in fully implementing GRB, the report added.
According to the report, GRB is not about creating a separate budget for women or spending on women programmes, but to rather ensure that the allocation of public resources is carried out in ways that contribute to advancing gender equality and women empowerment.
The GRB approaches are threefold: gender specific expenditure, expenditure that promote gender equality in public service and general or mainstream expenditure.
Gender specific expenditure consist of allocations to programmes that are specifically targeted to groups of women, men, girls or boys.
Meanwhile, expenditure that promote gender equality in public service contain allocations to equal employment opportunities.
The report further states that general or mainstream expenditure consists of other spending that are not targeted to specific groups.