San women and girls’ rights under the spotlight

11 Jul 2018 14:50pm
GOBABIS, 11 JUL (NAMPA) – The Women’s Leadership Centre (WLC) will on Thursday hold its first regional consultative meeting here to discuss the situation of San girls and women in Namibia.
The consultation places emphasis on leading a dialogue on the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).
The centre, which has been working with San girls and young women since 2014, will lead efforts to have discussions on this convention to determine how the situation with San women and girls conform to the CEDAW, a media statement by WLC’s Elizabeth |Khaxas on Wednesday stated.
“With the regional dialogue, we aim to increase awareness on the lives of San girls and women in the Omaheke Region, and to advocate for the implementation of the human rights of San girls and women, particularly CEDAW,” she explained.
Various speakers within the education, health, women and child welfare sectors are expected to address the meeting with emphasis on sharing their experiences and lessons learnt through their dealings with San women and children.
WLC works with San women and girls in seven villages across Namibia in a programme titled ‘Speaking for Ourselves: Voices of San Young Women’.
Four of these villages are in Omaheke and include Drimiopsis, Skoonheid, Omitara and Witvlei.
“This programme is based on the premise that if San young women are aware of their rights as guaranteed in the national and international laws and conventions, and are equipped with the knowledge and skills to advocate for these rights, they will be able to devise their own strategies to overcome the discrimination and human rights violations they face and become active agents of social change in their communities,” |Khaxas said.
CEDAW was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 18 December 1979 and entered into force as an international treaty on 03 September 1981. It seeks to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights and in equal rights of men and women.
The convention establishes an international bill of rights for women and an agenda for action by countries to guarantee the enjoyment of those rights.