Women representation in parliaments of most countries of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) has decreased or remained constant, painting a gloomy picture for women in future, SADC Executive Secretary Stergomena Tax said last week.
Addressing ministers of Gender and Women Affairs in Windhoek, Tax said gender mainstreaming and creating opportunities for women in positions of influence in SADC is vital to foster development in member states.
Ministers responsible for gender and women issues in SADC are deliberating on ways to empower women in the SADC region.
She said women continue to struggle to rise to positions of influence politically and socially because of lack of opportunities.
"While it is widely acknowledged that gender main streaming is important it is important to note that SADC states are making progress," she said.
Tax said most countries in SADC have not yet met the 50% representations by women in their parliaments.
She called on SADC member states to address the fundamentals that are hampering women emancipation in the region.
Speaking at the same event Namibia Minister of Gender Equality and Child Welfare Doreen Sioka said Namibia has made significant progress in women emancipation politically.
She called for continued engagement among member states in tackling gender disparities in politics. (Xinhua).