UNDP to prop up promotion of gender parity in Africa

Addis Ababa- Ethiopia (PANA) -- Encouraged by the declaration of African Union leaders on gender equality, the UN Development Programme (UNDP) has announced its willingness to keep on supporting initiatives for the advancement of women on the continent.
"Concrete things have come out of this [third ordinary] summit of the AU because African leaders have expressed their commitment to address issues of major concern to the women of Africa and have made concrete recommendations for implementation, monitoring and evaluation on a yearly basis to ensure for accountability and progress to be made on the issue of gender equality in Africa," Dr.
Coumba Mar Gadio, gender and development advisor at the UNDP Sub Regional Resource facility for West Africa (SURF WA), told PANA Thursday.
"Our programme puts a lot of emphasis on making the Millennium Development Goal number 3 which relates to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women, cross-cutting to all others, to make sure the gender dimension of development is taken into account into all areas.
"Progress made on all MDGs depends on the success of MDG 3 and vice versa.
One of our priority areas of cooperation with African organizations is to provide them with the required support for gender mainstreaming to take place into their endeavors and also for gender parity to be strengthen at all levels of continental, regional, and national institutions as recommended by African heads of states.
"This session was a very important event not only for the Heads of State and Government to discuss the issue of gender, but we were very happy to see how committed they are," she said.
The third ordinary session of the AU Assembly ending here Thursday has reaffirmed the African leaders' commitment to accelerate efforts to promote gender equality at all levels.
Since the second ordinary session, held in Maputo last year, UNDP has enhanced its partnership with the AU in terms of gender mainstreaming.
"The AU is our umbrella in working with regional economic communities and civil society organisations to further the progress of women economic empowerment, leadership, peace building, poverty eradication and combating HIV/AIDS," said Asna Ndiaye, UNDP's regional programme coordinator in Addis Ababa.
"Now we see progress being made.
The leaders appreciate that gender is a problem of development and that 52 percent of the African population cannot be left out of development programmes," Ndiaye noted.

08 july 2004 10:08:00

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