28 Aug 2019 14:30pm
By Isabel Bento
YOKOHAMA, 28 AUG (NAMPA) Namibias First Lady, Monica Geingos said that in order for gender-based violence (GBV) to come to an end, violence in society should first be reduced.
Geingos was speaking during the high level event co-organised by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the Organisation of African First Ladies for Development (OAFLAD), in collaboration with the African Union (AU) in Yokohama, Japan on Wednesday.
A violence-free society will definitely lead to a GBV-free nation and we need to start by eliminating violence in order to fight GBV, said Geingos.
She also urged for GBV victims to be heard and believed when telling their GBV stories.
The event took place on the side-lines of the ongoing Seventh Tokyo International Conference on African Development taking place at the Pacifico Yokohama Conference Centre in Yokohama.
OAFLAD is currently led by the First Lady of Burkina Faso, Adjoavi Sika Kabore, deputised by her Kenyan counterpart Margaret Kenyatta as vice-president.
It is an advocacy organisation where First Ladies of Africa seek to leverage their unique position to advocate for policies that make health services accessible and laws that boost women and youth empowerment.
Kabore emphasised the organisations aim to achieve a zero-GBV Africa in the future and appealed on the nations to work hand-in-hand for the benefit of everyone.
United Nations Under-Secretary General and UNFPA Executive Director, Dr Natalia Kanem said the organisation is working tirelessly to help girls stay in school and end female genital mutilation and child marriages and while at it, get leaders and stakeholders to help achieve these goals.
Although progress is being made on ending female gender mutilation, these issues all need to be addressed from the grassroots, Kanem stressed.
The First Ladies of Africa organisation tries to reinforce favourable policies and programmes through advocacy, resource mobilisation and development of partnerships with all stakeholders at all levels.
They also engage in various community-level activities to sensitise communities and create awareness on health risks and policies.