Women in high positions of government, a senior government official has lamented.
Elizabeth Gabona, the Director for Higher Education Ministry of Education, Science Technology and Sports, and a winner of the faithful servants medal at Kololo early this month has criticized so-called elite women for caring about their interests alone that helping their colleagues from the abyss of poverty and disease.
“Most of the women we have as our role models are too self-centered and they only focus on their desires which is different from struggling and fighting for women’s right to have equal excess to all opportunities as men,” Gabona added: “Uganda has perfect laws that empower women but we lack strong and vigilant women to come out and enforce these laws. We see women in political strikes which don’t even favour them.”
Gabona’s comments came during the Nile Dialogue Platform, organized by the Nile Dialogue Platform, an organization whose stated goals include promoting unity and diversity through dialogue.
Lokman Cañar, the Executive Director of the Nile Dialogue Platform added to the criticism of Ugandan elites to stop cheap talk to move into action if the country is to realize the goal of gender parity.
Lokman said: “As we celebrate the day of women, it is sad to note that much of the world’s poor are made of women and children and their voices not heard. The interests of women are often overlooked and they lack access to basic needs like health care water, food, education and information. In turn, they are deprived of their social rights and equality to freedom, justice, honor and security. This has led to succession of injustice leading to vulnerability, dependency and subsequent violence and intimidation.”
Lokman added: “This year’s global theme; “Planet 50-50 by 2030 step it up for gender equality which resonates with Fethullah Gulen’s call which says that women should be given opportunity and be free from social pressure that deny their equality.”
These comments come hot on the heals of complaints from several sections of the population indicating that the cause of women emancipation has not gone as far as it is projected.
The minister of state for gender Rukia Nakadama called upon women to work together so that they can escape the curse of being under-looked by society.
The former minister of finance Syda Bumba argued that women and men are equal in as far as access to human rights is concerned.
“A woman is equal to a man in the rights and freedom of expression, freedom to live a descent life, and freedom of finance. Equality before the law, just treatment, marriage and founding a family life, personal life, privacy and protection are among the rights of women”
The Nile Dialogue Platform was created in memory of the ideas of the famed Turkish philosopher Fetullah Gullen, who dedicated his life to preaching the meaning of peace and humanity in society.
Eunice Owiny, the Director Pioneer Mentoring Initiative Uganda called upon women to behave with integrity. Owiny explained that integrity is the building of a legacy that attracts young girls to follow and mentor them.
Owiny said: “Many women think money can build legacy but it’s not true many women with money have been suppressed. Integrity involves accountability therefore every woman must be accountable in whatever she tries out and as mothers you must be trustworthy to yourselves and as well as your daughters either biological or not.
“Integrity is the beauty that will never grow old. All the external beauties of women grow old and fade away but integrity will always shine,” Owiny added.
Empowering the girl child
Tegulwa Nageeba Hassan, the President women of faith and a teacher at Galaxy International School said: “As we try empowering the girl child we must try very much to avoid speaking bad words to these girls. Women must start speaking what builds them and start skills at the early stage, we also have to mentor our children uniformly and also we must answer questions to our young children according to their age brackets.”