Chakwera sets the bar high in ending gender inequalities

President Dr Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera has pledged to continue empowering women to curb inequalities that currently exist between men and women in the country.

The President made the remarks on Thursday in Lilongwe when he presided over the official opening of a three-day first ever high level inter1 dialogue on Generation Equality and Women’s Leadership in Africa.

He said achievements made in achieving gender equality should not cause contentment but should be reason enough to make everyone push hard so that the bar is raised higher.

“My administration has made major strides in empowering women, but I am not contented because I know there is more that can be done; the bar can be raised higher,” he said.

Chakwera: we can raise the bar higher

Chakwera then reiterated his commitment to support feminists’ diverse activities and mobilise resources that would ensure that women are empowered economically.

“Ensuring that resources are made available for women is important; this will end economic injustices still existing in the country,” he said.

He added that COVID-19 exposed inequalities that continue existing between men and women, therefore, new commitments and plans have to be put in place to ensure that women are safeguarded.

Among the notable achievements during Chakwera’s administration regarding women empowerment include the appointment of a cabinet with 41 per cent of women representation in different ministerial positions.

The President, however, noted that despite so many initiatives and activities geared to end inequalities in the country, women are still marginalised.  He said the unfortunate part is that it is fellow women who marginalise each other.

He, therefore, appealed to women to support each other in their quest to achieve gender equality by 2030.

Former President of the Republic of Liberia and Chairperson of African Women Network, Dr Ellen Johnson Sirleaf who delivered a keynote address at the event commended President Chakwera for his commitment to end inequalities existing between men and women in the country.

She said countries should continue striving for a better environment that necessitates women to thrive economically and socially.

“Patriarch laws and tribes still favour men, therefore, we should beat all the odds to ensure that inequalities are broken,” she said.

The Liberian former president said the younger generation of women is looking up to the older generation; therefore, platforms such as the intergenerational dialogue are important to coach the new generation.

Dr. Joyce Banda, Chairperson of Women’s Empowerment and Development (WED) Africa-Asia

In her remarks, former Malawi President, Dr Joyce Banda who is the current Chairperson of Women’s Empowerment and Development (WED) Africa-Asia and member of the committee of Elders (Comprising of former and seating female heads of state), said the conference marks a milestone where women and girls can exercise their powers.

She said in many sectors of the economy, specific efforts need to be taken to ensure that women are not left behind.

The intergenerational conference is being held under the theme “Growing and Glowing Against all odds” and has attracted high level dignitaries, including former heads of state and global business captains.