- Published on 10 October 2006
Swaziland is a patriarchal society where male superiority is embedded into all social, political, cultural and economic spheres. The socially ascribed roles assign men as head of households and breadwinners and women as care givers. These roles permeate the whole social system illustrated at family, community and national level.
UNDP continues to be committed to enhancing development that is truly gender equal. One that fosters the creation of an enabling environment for policy change by highlighting women concerns such as greater representation in decision-making bodies and by questioning institutional structures that continue to perpetuate the inequalities.
UNDP Swaziland’s Upstream policy dialogue initiatives are targeting the promotion of gender equality and the advancement of women. They will continue to focus on the removal of the minority status of Swazi women.
The following programme initiatives are intended to address the issue of the minority status of women;
Support to the formulation and operationalisation of the National Gender Policy.
Support to the formulation and implementation of the National Gender Programme (2006-2010)
Gender, Human Rights and Law Reform
Domestication and implementation of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW)and other regional and international instruments
National Gender Policy:
In line with its new mandate, the UNDP Country office has made a deliberate effort to shift the focus of activities upstream geared towards policy advisory services and institutional capacity building. The support to the gender policy formulation process carried out in 2001 was a clear demonstration of this shift.
UNDP therefore welcomes the revised document of the draft gender policy, which has been produced and awaits Cabinet approval. It is hoped that once the policy has been approved it will pave the way for legal reforms along side with the constitution of Swaziland. A national gender programme support document covering the years 2006-2010 provides an action plan for implementation. The draft policy was reviewed in 2005 to capture current challenges in gender.
The draft of the National Gender Policy is “To promote government’s effort in providing equal opportunities for both men and women, boys and girls at all levels of society for the attainment of Gender Equality”. Fosters the attainment of MDG 3, Promotion of Gender Equality and Empowerment of women.
Capacity Building for Women Parliamentary Caucus (WPC)
In 2005 the programme supported a workshop aimed at developing a strategy for WPC. An implementation plan for the strategy has been developed.
In 2006 the project supported a three-day capacity building workshop on gender and human rights, national, regional and international instruments. The capacity building was targeted at empowering the WPC with skills and techniques for advocating for the ratification, domestication and implementation of these instruments and lobby for reporting on them where necessary.
Capacity Building for UNDP, UN Agencies and Partners
The programme supported capacity building on gender mainstreaming for UNDP, UN agencies, NGOs, government officials including gender focal points in 2005. Capacity building for UN agencies and partners on MDGs and Gender was conducted during 2006. The workshop was a great success with the gender unit in the Ministry of Home Affairs making presentations on Gender, Ministry of Economic Planning and Development presenting on MDGs, Central Statistical Office presenting on gender and MDGs. The Johannesburg Regional Service Center and UNIFEM also made presentations in the workshop.
For more information on this programme contact
, the Gender Focal Point.
Governance and Gender Mainstreaming Project Information