On Wednesday, December 06, 2023, during the celebration of the fifth National Women’s Week in Kampala, women leaders called for an increase in women’s representation from the current 30% to 50% in top positions. The State Minister for Gender and Culture, Mr Peace Mutuuzo, emphasized the importance of achieving a 50-50 gender balance in leadership roles. The event, held under the theme “Thinking through a diversity,” served as a platform for discussions on promoting gender equality.
Mr Mutuuzo highlighted the need to align women’s representation with constitutional objectives, expressing concerns that despite more women taking up positions, the existing percentage does not adequately support their participation. Advocating for active involvement in the review process, he urged individuals and organizations to engage with the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs to ensure women’s voices are heard.
Addressing the issue from an NGO perspective, Ms Rita Aciro, the executive director of Uganda Women’s Network (UWONET), encouraged women to actively fight for their rights rather than lamenting. While acknowledging progress made in women’s leadership, Aciro emphasized the necessity for increased representation in top positions to facilitate inclusive decision-making.
Aciro highlighted the changing landscape over the years, noting that, despite challenges, women in leadership roles have made significant contributions. She stressed the importance of women’s inclusion in financial platforms and called for tangible efforts to address impediments to women’s access to productive resources and government wealth creation schemes.
Additionally, Aciro emphasized the role of women representatives in ensuring universal access to health services, with a specific focus on reducing maternal mortality rates to zero.
Citing data from the Global Gender Gap Report 2022, the article noted that Uganda currently ranks 109th out of 156 countries in terms of gender parity in top leadership positions. Although women’s representation in the Ugandan Parliament exceeds the global average, the overall participation of women in high-ranking positions remains low. In both the private and public sectors, women hold only 37% and 36.2% of senior management and leadership positions, respectively.