AU and UN Women Commitment to Gender Equality in Africa
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AU and UN Women Commitment to Gender Equality in Africa

The African Union Commission’s  (WGYD) in collaboration with UN Women Eastern and Southern Africa and the UN Women Liaison Office is to develop a joint plan for action, advocacy and resource mobilization on gender issues in Africa.

At a meeting in Nairobi, Kenya it was agreed on drafting a joint Framework aligned with the African Union and the UN Women strategic gender priorities for Africa.

The Framework will take in consideration the AU’s unique positioning and continent-wide access to African policy makers at the highest levels and UN Women’s expertise and mandate as global champion for women and girls.

The Framework is aligned with both organization strategies on gender equality, in particular the WGYD Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment Strategy  and the UN Women’s Agenda 2030.

In participation were Dr. Monique Nsanzabaganwa, Deputy Chairperson (DCP) for the African Union Commission, and Dr. Åsa Regnér, Assistant Secretary General and UN Women Deputy Executive Director, which contributions contributed to the alignment of strategies on a programmatic level.

Dr Nsanzabaganwa commended the deliberate approach to leverage on the respective institutions’ comparative advantages and imparted four key messages, “We must focus on the following things to achieve scale for the work we intend to do together, focus on the importance of shared valued partnerships, we must build an ecosystem of efficiency to connect the macro and the micro level interventions to make a difference at scale, we must implement game changing initiatives and extend institutional, technical and financial support to each other for the partnership to be successful”.

Dr. Åsa Regnér complemented the Deputy Chairperson’s remarks and emphasized the need for ongoing collaboration to be deliberate and responsive to the needs of the continent.

Ms. Prudence Ngwenya, Ag. Director of the AUC WGYD, expressed the importance of a collaborative framework being in place to ensure the organizations deliver with impact and at scale.

“It is indeed an exciting time to work in the women and youth empowerment space and what has become abundantly clear is that collaboration is the best way to make our respective efforts reverberate across Africa.

UN Women is a trusted partner of the AUC and as we enhance how we work this will be a beacon to other UN agencies who want to partner with us on transformative gender and youth programming,” she said during the meeting.

Dr. Maxime Houinato, UN Women’s ESARO Regional Director, emphasized the need to have a collaborative document that showcases a “mutual commitment and accountability”, focused on key initiatives with the youth.

The participants also agreed on five key areas that should be included in the new ‘AU-UN Women Collaborative Framework’, particularly: Programmatic support on GEWE; Challenges at Operational Level; Resources; Support and Opportunities.

The three-day meeting provided a platform to build a systematic engagement between the AUC and UN Women in strengthening their strategic engagement on gender equality and women’s empowerment in Africa, for the next five years.