In pursuit of propelling gender equality and women’s empowerment to new heights, the recent MaputoAt20 Celebrations in Nairobi unveiled the resounding Nairobi Call to Action. With a focal theme of “Accelerating Promises for African Women and Girls,” the Call to Action resonates with AU member states, civil society, policymakers, international partners, and communities. Read on as we delve into the core sentiments of this profound call.
Paving the Path for Progress: The Nairobi Call to Action
The Nairobi Call to Action on the Maputo Protocol identifies key strategies and commitments urgently required for closing the implementation gap of the Maputo Protocol as envisioned in the main theme of the conference, which was centred on Accelerating Promises for African Women and Girls. The call to action reaches out to AU member states, civil society, policymakers, international strategic partners, and communities. It was read out by Ms. Lehau Victoria Maloka, HOD Coordination and Outreach, WGYD, African Union Commission.
Ms. Lehau Victoria Maloka, HOD Coordination and Outreach, WGYD, African Union Commission.
To the Member States:
- Urge the 11 AU member states that have not ratified the protocol to do so and those who have ratified to domesticate and implement and for relevant state parties to withdraw their reservations.
- Request state parties to the Maputo Protocol to report to the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights as per provisions of Article 26 of the Maputo Protocol.
- Accelerate the implementation of agreed legal institutions, policy frameworks, and protocols related to gender equality and women’s empowerment.
- Commit to allocate internal financial resources to provide adequate support to the women’s rights agenda.
- Ensure the implementation of the provisions of the declaration and call to action of the two men’s conferences held respectively in Kinshasa in 2021 and Dakar in 2022.
- Scale up efforts to end violence against women and girls in Africa, including the adoption of AU’s convention on ending Violence Against Women in Africa.
- Accelerate the implementation of the roadmap on the African Women’s Decade on Financial and Economic Inclusion, AWDFE 2020 -2030 and deliver on commitments to increase the role and leadership of women in decision-making spheres at all levels of governance.
- Create conducive conditions for intergenerational dialogues with the youth to enhance their participation in the respect, promotion and protection of women’s rights.
To the Africa Union Commission:
- Steer the year-long celebrations of the 20th anniversary of the Maputo Protocol from 11th -10th July 2024 with the aim to amplify advocacy to reach out to grassroots communities and make each and every woman aware of their rights.
- Create a platform for dialogue and interphase between stakeholders representing policies, partnerships and people discussing shared values, goals and aspirations for taking the work of the Maputo Protocol.
- Strengthen reporting and accountability mechanisms to hold leaders to deliver on commitments through the implementation of the Maputo Protocol Scorecard and Framework Index.
- Enhance the role of women in the implementation of the African agenda to silencing guns by 2030, keeping in mind that women and girls suffer differently from the effects of conflict in Africa.
- Mobilise partnerships to implement the women and youth financial and economic inclusion initiative and catalyse youth engagement.
To the African Civil Society Organizations:
- Mobilise grassroots women and girls, civil society organisations, media and other key actors to popularise the provisions of the Maputo Protocol.
- Reinvigorate the commitment of women of Africa to leave no woman behind in the transformation of Africa into an inclusive and citizen-centred continent.
- Mobilise men as equal partners in the respect, promotion and protection of women’s human rights in Africa.
To the UN agencies and International Strategic Partners
- Strengthen partnerships in support of the advancement of women’s rights in Africa with a special focus on reaching out to women in grassroots communities.
- Continue to mobilise financial and other resources to scale up actions for the respect, promotion and protection of women’s rights in Africa.
- Convene a special session on Maputo at the 54th session of the Human Rights Council and the 68th session of the Commission on the Status of Women.
Women’s leadership in Africa is a longstanding tradition. Across history, women have played pivotal roles as problem solvers, leading in various capacities, from pre-colonial military leadership to post-conflict transition and navigating contemporary crises. As Africa charts its course ahead, tapping into women’s knowledge, skills, and talents is vital for reclaiming the continent’s future across all levels of problem-solving.