UN Women is thus organising a number of high-profile events in over 40 countries, where ordinary citizens, activists, musicians, athletes, students, security personnel, scholars and stock exchange officials would be among those who would commit to “Stepping It Up for Gender Equality.”

The global theme is: “Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step It Up for Gender Equality”.

A statement released by the UN to commemorate the Day, said at its Headquarters, in New York, prominent speakers from governments, the United Nations, businesses and civil society, including youth groups, would convene to advance women’s empowerment and overcome barriers to change.

Key to the discussion, the statement said would the essential role of gender equality in attaining the recently agreed Sustainable Development Goals, (SDGs) a blueprint for global development endorsed by all UN Member States.

It is expected to build momentum for the effective implementation of the SDG’s, which are aimed at generally tackling poverty, and attaining a mutually beneficiary prosperous world with healthy people in a safe environment.

The day is also being used to equally focus on new commitments under UN Women’s and other existing commitments on gender equality, women’s empowerment and women’s human rights.

The UN’s event would also highlight the importance of equal representation of women at all levels of the UN system, and the integration of gender issues in all aspects of the UN’s work.

“The second panel discussion entitled: ‘The Push for Parity,’ would probe the progress made in achieving gender equality in the UN system, examine the challenges remaining, and unpack how to mainstream gender perspectives.”

The UN has declared: “Women and girls are critical to finding sustainable solutions to the challenges of poverty, inequality and the recovery of the communities’ hardest-hit by conflicts, disasters and displacements.

“They are at the frontline of the outbreaks of threatening new epidemics, such as Zika virus disease or the impact of climate change,” said UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka in her address the Day.

“The participation of women at all levels—and the strengthening of the women’s movement—has never been so critical, working together with boys and men, to empower nations, build stronger economies and healthier societies. It is the key to making Agenda 2030 transformational and inclusive.”

Therefore, the world body has suggested that, “Everyone – men and women – can pledge to take a concrete step to help achieve gender parity more quickly – whether to help women and girls achieve their ambitions, call for gender-balanced leadership, respect and value difference, develop more inclusive and flexible cultures or root out workplace bias.

“Each of us can be a leader within our own spheres of influence and commit to take pragmatic action to accelerate gender parity”.

Around the world to mark International Women’s Day, 35 stock exchanges would ring their opening or closing bells to raise awareness, the statement said.

The UN Women Deputy Executive Director, Lakshmi Puri, would ring the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange in New York, as part of joint awareness-raising efforts with the Global Compact.

In Ghana, the Ministry of Gender Children and Social protection is leading policy dialogue on the Interstate Succession Law.

The dialogue seeks to decipher interstate succession in the country as the Intestate Succession Bill (2009) when passed, would replace with the PNDCL 111 fractional system of estate distribution, which is deemed relatively difficult to calculate.

In the Bill, the estate would be distributed among the beneficiaries in percentage terms.

In Santiago, 800 private sector and government leaders would gather to show support.

A half-day session at the Nairobi Exchange would profile best practices by companies to empower women, while speakers in Amman will stress how gender diversity improves corporate performance.

Based on a partnership agreement signed on the occasion of the day, in Nigeria, the UN Women would join MasterCard, the National Identity Management Commission and civil society organisations to kick off a new programme that aims to ensure that at least 500,000 women obtain national identity cards that enable access to financial services, including electronic payments—a foundation for economic empowerment.

A friendly hockey match between a men’s and women’s team in Tanzania; a march and cycling rally in New Delhi, India; a festival with live musical and dance performances in Palestine; a football match and painting expositions across Albania; and a women’s “run to Step It Up” in São Paulo, Brazil, are other activities for the Day.

Source: GNA

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