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Gender Equality & Development


Aspiration 6 of Agenda 2063 calls for “An Africa, whose development is people-driven, relying on the potential of African people, especially its women and youth, and caring for children.” Agenda 2063 therefore requires that we live in a more inclusive society where all the citizens are actively involved in decision making in all aspects and where no child, woman or man is left behind or excluded, on the basis of gender, political affiliation, religion, ethnic affiliation, locality, age or other factors.  Article 3 of the Protocol on Amendments of the Constitutive Act of the African Union recognises the critical role of women in promoting inclusive development and calls for the AU “to ensure the effective participation of women in decision-making, particularly in the political, economic and socio-cultural areas.”

The AU recognises that that gender equality is a fundamental human right and an integral part of regional integration, economic growth and social development and has developed the AU’s strategy for Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment (GEWE) to ensure the inclusion of women in Africa’s development agenda.

The GEWE strategy focuses on 6 key pillars namely:

  1. Women’s Economic Empowerment and Sustainable Development - Women’s empowerment is key to growth, prosperity and sustainability
  2. Social justice, protection &Women’s Rights - woman’s rights are human rights; they span all spheres- social, political, legal and economic.
  3. Leadership & Governance - good governance demands equal and effective participation by women.
  4. Gender Management Systems – providing access and investing resources (financial and other technical resources) to support women
  5. Women, Peace and Security – Ensuring women’s perspectives  are included on issues of Peace - Prevention, Protection, Promotion Programmes
  6. Media & ICTs – Given women a voice in African media and access to technology for knowledge

The AU’s African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa requires State Parties to combat all forms of discrimination against women through appropriate legislative measures.

The Women, Gender and Youth Directorate (WGDD) is the responsible for leading, guiding, advocating for and coordinating the AU’s efforts to achieve gender equality and promote women’s empowerment and ensuring African countries live up to the AU’s Solemn Declaration on Gender Equality in Africa (SDGEA).


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Women Gender and Youth Directorate

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