————Luapula Province minister says fighting for gender equality should not be left to women alone.
Officiating at this year’s International Women’s Day celebration in Milenge district yesterday, Brigadier General Benson Kapaya who is also Chienge Member of Parliament said President Edgar Lungu has taken gender as his own agenda by appointing a woman to the position of Vice President.
Brig. Gen. Kapaya said women should not be made to carry the burden of fighting for gender equality on their own adding that it is time men accepted the responsibility to make gender equality happen.
He added that in order to make the gender agenda happen, women do not need men to speak or favour them but rather work together as one because it is their business.
He said the family unity is the cornerstone of achieving gender equality and sustainable development among men and women, boys and girls.
He has called on government, cooperating partners, religious and faith based organisations as well as society organisations to work with the family to strengthen the support systems which play a critical role in shaping people’s lives.
Brig. Gen. Kapaya also expressed worry at the escalating numbers of Gender Based Violence cases, teenage pregnancies, poverty and forced marriages in the country.
He however said government will continue implementing several programmes to bridge the gap between men and women and to curb Gender Based Violence.
And District Women Organising Committee Chairperson, Beatrice Nkandu has appealed to government to include more women in decision making positions.
This year’s International Women’s Day was celebrated under the theme, ‘Gender is my agenda: make it happen.’