International women’s day was celebrated in Osire Refugee settlement located in Namibia on the 8th of March 2017th, the theme “BE BOLD FOR CHANGE”. Two thousand eight hundred (2800) women and men whose age ranged from five to seventy-six attended the event.
“From peace in our home to peace in the world: be bold for change.”
Various representatives attended and spoke on that day, the message they were all spreading was one of empowering women, giving more opportunities to females and fighting for gender equality.
Mrs. Josphine T. Nghimtina Deputy Director of the Settlement and Reception Center from the Minister of Home Affairs and Immigration said: The message from the Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo Ngcuks was, the desire to construct a different world for working women and letting young girls have more opportunities that lead beyond traditional services. She also encouraged the Osire community to fight for gender equality and support women in both the local and global scale. Before concluding by saying Osire settlement should make celebrating women’s day a tradition she mentioned, causes of violence against women such as economic inequality between genders, physical violence to resolve conflict, low female independence to name a few
Mr. Salatiel Executive Director of Women Action Development pointed out that women should fight against ugly poverty, unemployment, domestic violence, HIV/AIDS, which claimed many innocent lives – destroying not only the families but the economy of the country, wiping out the legacy of the nation. The director also mentioned women are the majority and they should act like it.
Mr. Ricardo Gertze read a speech on the behalf of Hon. MP Minister of Gender equality and child Welfare, focusing on gender based violence and empowering women and girls. The speech also inspired to change attitudes, perceptions, norms, and practices for the empowerment of females. The women in Namibia were asked to come together, embrace one another share knowledge on achievements and contributions by the women around us.
Ms. Twagirmana Angelique, the Women Association coordinator stated that BE BOLD FOR CHANGE is more than a slogan to fight inequality. For Ms. Twagirmana Be Bold for Change is a call for women to be a part of the male panel and challenge stereotypes. Insisting women campaign against violence and educate youth about positive relationships.
African humanitarian action (AHA) country representative emphasized the theme and mentioned the role everyone plays in making a decision to increase gender equality through purposeful collaboration. She ended her speech talking about protecting women from violence in the workplace and giving women access to decent work and climate resilient jobs.
The day concluded by giving thanks to all the stakeholders, UNHCR, AHA, the Government of Namibia, the WAD, the Refugee Community Committee, the Osire youth group, the Council of Churches and the whole community at large.