Head of UN Women and Fijian Minister for Women Discuss Gender-Based Violence
The Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Hon. Rosy Sofia Akbar met today in New York with the Executive Director for UN Women, Dr. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka at the UN Headquarters. Their talks focused on worldwide efforts to combat the wide-spread problem of Gender-Based Violence (GBV).
Minister Akbar thanked UN Women for the work they are doing in Fiji to help eliminate violence against women. She said that much work remained to be done in collaboration between the Government, NGOs and development partners on combating violence against women. The minister gave Fiji’s “Zero Tolerance Violence Free Communities Programme” as a best practice example of what can be achieved.
Executive Director Mlambo-Ngcuka said that international experience was showing that the GBV problem would need to be tackled through education of children at school, so that GBV becomes inculcated as a culturally unacceptable practice. Executive Director Mlambo-Ngcuka also referred to international action that needs to be taken by governments in order to set examples of high level action to be taken against GBV recalcitrance.
Minister Akbar also thanked UN Women for the work they are carrying out in Fiji on the “Markets for Change Initiative” and the “Solar Grandmothers” project. Executive Director Mlambo-Ngcuka assured Minister Akbar that UN Women was deeply committed to continuing its work in Fiji and the surrounding Pacific Islands.
At the conclusion of the meeting, Minister Akbar presented the Executive Director with a cheque for FJD$10,000 as the Government of Fiji’s annual voluntary contribution to the operation of UN Women.