South Sudan Celebrates International Women’s Day in Wau
03 May 2023
South Sudan’s theme for the 2023 International Women’s Day was “Promoting Gender Equality Through Innovative Technology Towards a Better South Sudan.’’
Women from diverse backgrounds gathered at Wau Stadium on March 8, 2023, to celebrate International Women’s Day. The event attracted over 300 people including heads of ministries and agencies, National Transitional Legislative Assembly, women-led organizations, United Nations agencies, faith-based organizations and officials from embassies accredited to South Sudan among others.
“Promoting Gender Equality Through Innovative Technology Towards a Better South Sudan’’ was the theme for this years celebration. this theme resonates with the global theme‘’DigitalAll: Innovation and Technology for Gender Equality.’’
The Day was marked by traditional dances, poems, and speeches.
Rukaya Mohammed, UN Women Deputy Country Representative, said it is imperative that women and girls have access to technology in a safe and enabling environment.
“Our vision of equality, of what our world could be, for all of us, can and will include the equal enjoyment of the fruits of technology and innovation without fear of violence or abuse of any sort,’’ she said. “Women and girls must be able to engage, create, learn, and work, safely and productively either online or offline, making the most of all the opportunities in every sphere of life and at every stage of it, in education, in the economy, in society and in politics.”
Governor Sarah Cleto of Western Bahr El Ghazal said that International Women’s Day celebrates the strides women have made in society and also the challenges they face. Women, she said, continue to face discrimination, gender-based violence and early marriage.
“Today in our state we have witnessed women, girls and boys who march to show everyone that we need to continue marching until gender equality is realized,’’ she added.
Gov. Cleto said the goal is to use technology to promote gender equality, women’s economic empowerment and promote civic education. Girls and women, she said, must be included in deciding South Sudan’s future.
“We have to improve the access to digital tools, the whole world has become like a small village because of the technological innovations,’ she said. “We must engage our girls and women into the world of information, communication and technology.’’
In her keynote address, Minister Nadia Arop Dudi, of the Ministry of Culture Museum and National Heritage, said women should strive for equal representation in all sectors, technology, can play a critical role in the advancement of women. Women, she said, should not only focus on being in politics, but get more involved in agriculture and business.
“We want the next generation to be the technology generation,’ she said. “We want them to have good education to move South Sudan forward.”
In her remarks, Netherlands Ambassador Marjan Schippers said International Women’s Day is an opportunity to celebrate women’s accomplishments and recognize the challenges that they face. She said women leadership is key to lasting peace in South Sudan.
“I am here today to honor women’s leadership in South Sudan,’’ she said. “I honor the women leaders in South Sudan. They carry great responsibility for the nation. Women leadership at all levels is important to create a better life for all South Sudanese.’’
UN entities involved in this initiative
United Nations Resident Coordinator Office
United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women