Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Tanzania Works Toward Gender Equality

As election season draws near in Tanzania, the UN is taking steps to empower under-represented female candidates. In preparation for the October trip to the polls, the UN Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) is offering workshops that focus on public speaking, campaign planning, community mobilization, media engagement, lobbying and advocacy.

In 2005, during the last general election only 17 of the 232 contested parliamentary seats were held by women, even though the nation's Constitution allocates 30 percent of such seats for females. Ni Sha, one of UNIFEM's Deputy Regional Programme Directors believes that it is time for women and men to "join hands to promote equal representation, participation and leadership of women in the political processes and representative institutions." UNIFEM is also working with journalists across the country to ensure that women receive adequate campaign coverage leading up to election day.

With the 2015 Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) deadline only a few years away, this program demonstrates Tanzania's efforts to achieve Goal Three, which is to promote gender equality and empower women.

-Devynn Patterson

Source: "Female candidates in upcoming Tanzanian polls to receive UN election training"-UN News Centre