DRC/Launch of the 16 Days of Activism against GBV: communities called upon to build good foundations for creating equality between men and women
November 25 is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. This day also marks the launch of the 16 days of activism against gender-based violence. For the occasion, in collaboration with Internews, Actualité.cd organized a forum focusing on "the fight against gender-based violence at the heart of the electoral campaign".
National deputy Christelle Vuanga stressed that it is through work that women will gain acceptance in politics.
"I would ask women to keep going and stay focused. It's not easy, the community finds it hard to accept women who speak out, women who assert themselves. It's our responsibility to prepare the new generation that will lead this country."
For her part, University professor Espérance Baedila called on women politicians to master issues and anticipatory notions.
"Women need to play the game of politics, we need to know the issues, the stakes and put strategies in place. It's worth remembering that these things aren't done during the election campaign, they're prepared. If women want to prepare to become President of the Republic, I think they have to prepare for 15 or 20 years. "You have to raise awareness and then educate women."
Continuing, Grâce Lula, women's rights activist and member of the Comité permanent de concertation de la femme congolaise (CAFCO) insisted on the applicability of laws that promote women's political participation.
"There are laws that allow women to participate in political life in the same way as men, but the application of these laws poses a problem. There's also the collective imagination, which has always thought that politics is the prerogative of men. So, the collective imagination has constructed how women should behave, how they should do things, where they should be, and when they break out of this mold, it's as if they're breaking a certain law. We also talked about how the community should take charge of gender-based violence issues, because it's not just women's business, men are concerned too."
At the end of the conference, recommendations were made for a way out of the crisis: update knowledge, break stereotypes that limit women, evolve with norms and principles, build good foundations to create generations where women and men consider themselves complementary and equal.
The 16 Days of Activism to End Violence against Women is an annual international campaign that begins on November 25, International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, and ends on December 10, Human Rights Day.