The Executive Director of the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), Inés Alberdi, yesterday jetted in the country for a three-day official visit.
According to UNIFEM’s Communication Officer, Nora Kokanova, this is the first time Alberdi is visiting Rwanda and during her stay, she will launch UNIFEM’s 2008/2009 progress report titled; “Who answers to Women? Gender and Accountability.”
“The visit is part of the Director’s tour to several countries in Africa. While in Rwanda she will tour the organisation’s projects in the country and meet with high level officials of the government in the National Police, Ministry of Gender, civil society and the Mayor of Kigali among others,” Kokanova told The New Times in an interview.
In relation to the progress report, she added that it is a worldwide account of the progress of women specifically in as far as political accountability and justice are concerned.
It covers all countries where UNIFEM operates.
Kokanova noted that Rwanda is an exemplary nation to other countries in as far as women empowerment is concerned.
“The progress report will mainly seek to highlight political accountability of the high percentage of females in power; Gender Based Violence (GBV), accountability at the local level and reporting on community level.”
“Major expectations from her visit also include, strengthening accountability structures for gender equality in Rwanda as well as reinforcing women movements and networks or organisations,” she added.
UNIFEM is the United Nations women’s fund that provides financial and technical assistance to innovative programmes and strategies to foster women’s empowerment and gender equality.
In Rwanda the fund has facilitated economic empowerment of many women through the Agaseke programme and last week the organisation also launched the first baseline survey report on sexual and gender based violence.
According to UNIFEM Regional Director for Central Africa Office, Josephine Odera, the survey report will facilitate implementation of the GBV law which has since been passed by parliament.