Category

Africa News

Category

Small-scale fishers of the Western Cape have for the first time been granted access to fishing during the 2019/20 west coast rock lobster season as part of the transition to the new small-scale fishing sector.

This was announced by the Minister of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries, Ms Barbara Creecy, following a series of stakeholder workshops with fishing communities in the Western Cape.

“There was a general call for interim relief fishers to continue fishing for the next season and for fishers on the declared small-scale fishers list to be granted access to fish,” said the Minister adding that, in considering the requests from communities, the Department had been instructed to fast-track the roll-out of the small-scale fisheries sector in the province.

The Department was also directed to provide a transition from the current interim relief arrangement to a permanent and more structured small-scale fisheries sector in the Western Cape.

Minister Creecy says that it is imperative for small-scale fishers to be granted access to fishing while they are waiting on their 15-year fishing rights to be allocated. These 2 749 fishers were declared for the first time in 2018 as small-scale fishers as part of the roll-out of small-scale fishing sector in Western Cape. Minister Creecy also noted that the current interim relief dispensation will continue taking into account that some interim relief fishers have already signed contracts for the West Coast rock lobster 2019/20 fishing season. As a form of transition, the department has amended the interim relief lists to include fishers who have been declared small-scale fishers to be part of this last interim relief dispensation. Interim relief fishers and small-scale fishers will equally share the west coast rock lobster allocation allocated to them for the West Coast rock lobster 2019/20 fishing season.

During the Minister’s engagements, concerns were also raised about caretakers in the interim relief dispensation exploiting fishers.

“It is for this reason that in preparation for the West Coast rock lobster 2019/20 fishing season there will be no caretakers,” said the Minister.

All fishers will be required to sign a letter of authorisation drafted by the Department on the amended interim relief list for 2019/2020 fishing season. Interim relief fishers are to nominate an individual who will execute specific and spelled-out tasks on behalf of Interim Relief (IR) fishers. On signing, each fisher is given an opportunity to indicate which marketer they have signed with. This will also allow fishers who have not signed a contract to choose who they want to market their products without being influenced on the choice of marketer.

The person authorised by the majority of fishers in a community to assist interim relief fishers will be able to assist in the completion of permit and license application forms, collating all the

necessary supporting documents required by the Department, and ensuring that fishers do not sign more than one contract at a time. Among other responsibilities, the authorized person will also have to ensure that each fisher is able to exercise their right to enter into a contract with a marketer of their choice, submit completed permit and vessel application forms to the Department; sign landing slips and, if necessary, nominate additional fishers to assist with signing of landing slips against IR community’s permit; and assist any fisher with any information relating to the permit such as total of fish landed, information about export permits, and the like.

One of the many challenges raised by fishers was that the Western Cape small-scale fishers list did not include all small-scale fishers in the province and in that the process was not fair. As a result of the unhappiness among fishers about the final list of the declared small-scale fisher in the Western Cape Province, Minister Creecy appointed BDO auditors and advisory firm to conduct an investigation of the small-scale fisheries registration and verification process, as well as the final list of small-scale fishers for Western Cape Province.

Following the receipt of the preliminary findings of the probe, the Minister is considering the appointment of an independent panel to review the appeals of all unsuccessful applicants, and for it to provide a revised list of fishers who can be declared as additional small-scale fishers to the Minister for a decision.

Source: All Africa

Following the groundbreaking result on women in parliament in Rwanda, Liberian Members of Parliament are determined to understand how Rwanda has empowered its women and draw best practices to implement back home.

A delegation of Liberian legislators led by Honorable Acarous M. Gray on Monday held discussions with the Speaker of the lower chamber of deputies Right Honourable Donatille Mukabalisa and also met with other forums.

The Speaker took them through how Rwanda has empowered women in all sectors of life from mindset change to education that led to representation of 30% in all decision-making institutions.

“The benefit of this inclusion is tremendously visible in the country’s development and achieving more goals,” she observed.

The Liberians also had to digest Rwanda’s past dark history and how the country has defied odds to rebuild and get back on track in the past 25 years.

Mukabalisa explained them the functioning of Rwandan parliament and how Rwanda has overcome the dark history of 1994 genocide against Tutsi which claimed a million lives and how it has chosen to work together for the country’s development.

“We came to learn from best practices of Rwanda and get ideas that will help them establishing good policies in Liberia especially in gender empowerment,” Says the leader of Liberian delegation.

In Liberia, women have no chance of entering to the parliament, unless they are elected from their constituencies.

Hon. Acarous believes that the Rwandan experience especially the leadership structure provides the best way of empowering Liberian women.

The Liberians also learnt the principle that the Speaker of Rwanda parliament doesn’t belong to the same political party with the President of the Republic saying this is a good sign to parliament independence and democracy in the country.

Beyond the overarching pursuit of gender equality, the African Development Bank (AfDB) has started the active monitoring of disbursed loan to women on the continent through its newly introduced initiative, the Women Financing Index (WFI).

According to the President of the bank, Akinwunmi Adesina, the index is to take note of African countries that accord women a priority in loan disbursement. Nations that perform well according to data obtained would benefit more from financing from AfDB.

“WFI, which is currently under development, will rate banks and financial institutions who apply for loans from the African Development Bank, against the amounts they have lent or are lending to women,” Adesina said on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.

The bank’s chief further explained that institutions will be rated by their development impact which is based on the rate and volume at which they lend to women. “Top institutions will be rewarded with preferential financing terms from the African Development Bank,” he added.

Over the past decade, the number of women entrepreneurs in Africa has grown substantially. AfDB’s Africa Gender Equality Index shows that female entrepreneurship on the continent is the highest in the world and they make a sizeable contribution to Africa’s economy.

Across steel manufacturing companies in South Africa, Ethiopia’s textile and clothing designing, high-tech development in East Africa and agribusinesses in West Africa, female entrepreneurs are taking their place in the business landscape.

However, access to finance for African women in business is still seriously impeded. As of 2018, estimates showed that the financing gap for African women in business was as large as $42 billion.

WFI is part of a broader strategy the AfDB is employing to ensure women get the financial help they need. The bank’s goal is to mobilize up to $3 billion – through its Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa (AFAWA) initiative – to bridge the financing gap for women on the continent.

The AFAWA program, launched at the 2016 Bank’s Annual Meetings, aims to provide available, accessible and affordable financial services to women in business through selected financial institutions.

Apart from the financing index, AfDB also tracks the development of gender equality in African countries through its Gender Equality Index, which was launched in 2015.

The instrument is an assessment of the state of gender equality on the continent, examining the role of women as producers, economic agents, in human development, and as leaders in public life. It helps inform policymaking to further mainstream gender, which will lead to more inclusive growth.

“There is no doubt that Africa’s economy could grow even faster when women are empowered,” Adesina said in a speech last year citing a McKinsey study that says if all countries reached gender equality, the global gains in economic growth would be as much as 26 percent. Africa stands to gain up to 12 percent of the potential rewards.

Source: Ventures Africa

Beyond the overarching pursuit of gender equality, the African Development Bank (AfDB) has started the active monitoring of disbursed loan to women on the continent through its newly introduced initiative, the Women Financing Index (WFI).

According to the President of the bank, Akinwunmi Adesina, the index is to take note of African countries that accord women a priority in loan disbursement. Nations that perform well according to data obtained would benefit more from financing from AfDB.

“WFI, which is currently under development, will rate banks and financial institutions who apply for loans from the African Development Bank, against the amounts they have lent or are lending to women,” Adesina said on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.

The bank’s chief further explained that institutions will be rated by their development impact which is based on the rate and volume at which they lend to women. “Top institutions will be rewarded with preferential financing terms from the African Development Bank,” he added.

Over the past decade, the number of women entrepreneurs in Africa has grown substantially. AfDB’s Africa Gender Equality Index shows that female entrepreneurship on the continent is the highest in the world and they make a sizeable contribution to Africa’s economy.

Across steel manufacturing companies in South Africa, Ethiopia’s textile and clothing designing, high-tech development in East Africa and agribusinesses in West Africa, female entrepreneurs are taking their place in the business landscape.

However, access to finance for African women in business is still seriously impeded. As of 2018, estimates showed that the financing gap for African women in business was as large as $42 billion.

WFI is part of a broader strategy the AfDB is employing to ensure women get the financial help they need. The bank’s goal is to mobilize up to $3 billion – through its Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa (AFAWA) initiative – to bridge the financing gap for women on the continent.

The AFAWA program, launched at the 2016 Bank’s Annual Meetings, aims to provide available, accessible and affordable financial services to women in business through selected financial institutions.

Apart from the financing index, AfDB also tracks the development of gender equality in African countries through its Gender Equality Index, which was launched in 2015.

The instrument is an assessment of the state of gender equality on the continent, examining the role of women as producers, economic agents, in human development, and as leaders in public life. It helps inform policymaking to further mainstream gender, which will lead to more inclusive growth.

“There is no doubt that Africa’s economy could grow even faster when women are empowered,” Adesina said in a speech last year citing a McKinsey study that says if all countries reached gender equality, the global gains in economic growth would be as much as 26 percent. Africa stands to gain up to 12 percent of the potential rewards.

Source: Ventures Africa

By Miracle Nwankwo

The participation of women in the political life of a country is very pivotal to its development. In light of this, the recently held Women in Politics dialogue forum, organized by Women in Management, Business and Public Service, WIMBIZ was targeted towards discussions that will promote the participation of women in politics in Nigeria.

Speaking at the event moderated by Kadaria Ahmed, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, said that the country cannot achieve political dependence based on the rights of the Nigerian people to choose their leaders in a free and fair election without interference and imposition and yet argue for the imposition of quotas in elective offices.

The Speaker, who says he owes his political achievements to his mother who he said encouraged his participation in politics, established that he wants to be remembered as someone who contributed positively to the promotion of women courses in the political life of the country.

“My participation in politics is a legacy of my mother and I owe my achievements in this arena to her. Now, I am a father of daughters for whom I hold the highest ambitions.”

“At the end of my career in politics, it is my hope that I would have contributed constructively to the achievement of a society where my daughters and all our daughters can live up to their highest aspirations, freed from discrimination on the basis of their gender, and protected from the worst consequences of our patriarchal society,” he said.

Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Dr. Ramatu Tijjani, represented by director in the ministry of women affairs and social development said that women must support each other in the course of political movements so as to get into the mainstream leadership circle and seat properly.

Hon. Gbajabiamila, went on to announce his intention to propose the creation of a special Women Victory Fund to support the next National Executive Committee meeting of his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), this is to recruit more women who will contest elections on the platform of the party.

The forum which gathered together women with great interest in politics held on the 12 October 2019, at the prestigious Transcorp Hilton, Abuja Nigeria had other panel discussions on the sidelines.

WIMBIZ, a non-profit organisation started out resting on a sole vision; to be the catalyst that elevates the status and influence of women and their contribution to nation building. The organization which began 18 years ago, focused on having women in the private sector as well as business. However, there was need to have women in politics to push the course of women in every sphere. This idea did not sink until the kidnap of the Chibok girls which pushed the organization into women in politics. Launching out into politics, the organization had its first town hall meeting titled “Chibok and beyond” in 2014.

WIMBIZ is the first Nigerian NGO rated by NGO Advisor and ranked as 428 worldwide. It is also the only African/Nigerian affiliate partner and representative of the International Women Entrepreneurship Challenge (IWEC) Foundation.