The Prime Minister Dr Ruhakana Rugunda has said the NRM government is cognizant of the contribution of women in national development and has prioritized the concerns of women in the NRM manifesto which we adopted from the Women’s manifesto through a consultative process prior to the 2016 general elections.

The Premier called upon women to take advantage of the Women’s week, is a platform that enables the women of Uganda to discuss and lay strategies to overcome challenges women face as well as address multi-dimensional factors that continue to impede women’s empowerment and gender transformation in a more holistic manner through sharing knowledge and experiences.

ms-dorothy-kisaka-delivers-a-speech-on-behalf-of-pm-rugunda-during-the-opening-of-the-3rd-national-womens-week-at-hotel-african-on-wednesdayphoto-by-pmpu
Ms Dorothy Kisaka delivers a speech on behalf of PM Rugunda during the opening of the 3rd  National Women’s Week  at Hotel African on Wednesday(Photo by PMPU)

The Prime Minister’s remarks were contained  in a  speech read for him by Dorothy Kisaka, the Prime Minister’s Advisor on Governance during the opening of the 3rd National Women’s week organised under the theme “In Unison; Confronting the Unfinished  Business. United Women Can!” at hotel Africana on Wednesday.

ms-dorothy-kisaka-chats-with-dr-thelma-awori-during-the-opening-of-the-3rd-national-womens-week-at-hotel-african-on-wednesdayphoto-by-pmpu
Ms Dorothy Kisaka chats with Dr Thelma Awori during the opening of the 3rd   National Women’s Week  at Hotel African on Wednesday(Photo by PMPU)

Dr Rugunda said the NRM government has a track record of uplifting the status of women and is still committed to supporting this cause through a number of mechanisms, adding that Government has also created a conducive policy, legal, regulatory and institutional framework to support women’s empowerment and gender equality.

The 5 key concerns raised in the women’s manifesto 2011-21 include, improving women’s health through enabling access to care after childbirth and postnatal care; availing equal right to women to access and acquire land and property; Improving and promoting women and girl’s education and empowering women economically through the Uganda women entrepreneurship programme (UWEP) that was launched by the government to boost entrepreneurship capabilities of women through provision of affordable credit.

 

Others include: technical advice and information on value addition as well as market access for their products and services; and finally empowering and engaging women in politics and decision making leadership.

The Premier noted that there are still challenges the women face in society which include, gender based violence, high maternal mortality rates, unemployment, limited access, control and ownership of economic resources, high dropout rates among others.

He however assured the women that government is fully aware of the challenges and is committed to addressing them particularly through the Office of the Prime Minister.

The Prime Minister also thanked Uganda Women’s Network (UWONET) and other Development Partners for organizing and attending the women’s week.

The Chairperson Public Accounts Committee in Parliament, Osege Angelina who represented the leader of opposition in Parliament, Winfred Kizza said that women have championed opposition leadership in Parliament which is a sign of confidence in women leadership.

Osege said that the opposition shadow cabinet in Parliament highly supports women activities evidenced by a number of legislative proposals for women they have tabled in parliament aimed at improving health and welfare among the women to enhance service delivery.

“Women carry the most burden in society. We therefore as the opposition in Parliament pledge our continued support to these women for the development of the country,” Osege said.

Women rights activist, Dr Thelma Awori noted that a number opportunities have been availed to women through the social movement building, including the documentation and publication of  women actions, movements and cause that empower and avail them equal opportunities to showcase their achievements as well as exercise their rights.

Dr Thelma however tasked women to unite and fight against gender inequalities and injustices through the use of the sharpest and best communication strategies available in order to enable the different women movements achieve the visions they have set.

The event was attended by diplomats and woman activists among others. The women’s mobilisation song was also launched during the event.

ENDS

By Doreen Nasasira