What you need to know:
- The plan seeks to ensure women and girls in Kenya realise their full potential in a peaceful, inclusive, democratic and equitable nation.
- The UN Women boss said the organisation will work with state and non-state actors to achieve its objective.
The UN Women office in Kenya has launched a three-year strategic plan to accelerate the gender equality push.
Country director Anna Mutavati revealed that the 2023-26 plan covers four thematic areas. She spoke during its launch in a Nairobi hotel. The plan has been aligned to national priorities, the UN Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework and the Global UN Women Strategic Plan.
The plan seeks to ensure women and girls in Kenya realise their full potential in a peaceful, inclusive, democratic and equitable nation. The UN Women boss said the organisation will work with state and non-state actors to achieve its objective.
The war on violence against women and girls features at the top of the programme. The organisation will scale up the institutional capacity of state and non-state actors to prevent and respond to gender-based violence (GBV) and align with Generation Equality Forum commitments to end all forms of GBV by 2026.
Ms Mutavati said the plan will also help in formulating, strengthening and implementing policy and legislative frameworks that promote the participation, inclusion and representation of women and girls in leadership and governance. It will also assist in strengthening systems for financing gender equality and accountability for gender-responsive service delivery.
“The plan will also help enhance the visibility and capacity of women and girls to participate in democratic processes and inclusive governance, and increase the production of quality sex-disaggregated data and statistics to track progress to ensure decision and policy changes are based on data,” said Ms Mutavati.
Peace and security
It will deepen the work on women peace and security by helping develop and implementing gender-responsive policies. “Women need to be at the centre of prevention of corruption, terrorism, drugs and all threats to peace and security. This is because women and girls usually bear the greatest brunt of these ills.”
UN Women will also support the realisation of affirmative action opportunities for government procurement, sustainable consumption, unpaid care and domestic work. In addition, it will support the development and implementation of policies and strategies for gender-responsive climate change, disaster risk mitigation and natural resource management.
Stephen Jackson, the United Nations resident coordinator in Kenya, said the UN is committed to supporting Kenya’s gender equality journey. He said the gender equality push will ensure no one is left behind, particularly women and girls who have for decades suffered the effects of inequalities.
“We are determined to leave no one behind. It is unjust to leave women and girls behind. It is actually a violation of human rights. A nation cannot develop if it leaves 50 per cent of her population behind,” said Mr Jackson, adding development blueprint like Vision 2030 is at risk of not being realised if women and girls are left behind.
Mr Jackson noted that 30 per cent of Kenyan households headed by women live below the poverty line, hence the need for state and non-state actors at national and county levels to partner to enhance gender equality.
Kenya Women Parliamentary Association (Kewopa) chairperson Leah Sankaire said her organisation will support the implementation of the UN Women’s strategic plan. “As Kewopa, we are going to support the needed legal and policy interventions in the key thematic areas of the strategic plan, all of which are aimed at enhancing gender equality.”
Gender and Affirmative Action Principal Secretary Veronica Nduva said the government would work with UN Women to implement the plan and achieve equality. She said the government is keen on eliminating GBV, realising the two-thirds gender rule and fighting the effects of climate change.
“The State Department of Gender in particular underscores the importance of fresh gender data to help make necessary policy changes and decisions that enhance gender equality,” she said.