Solomon Islands today joins the celebration of International Women’s Day.
The event attracted hundreds of people from all walks of life in the country to be part together in a parade from the Honiara City Council up to the National Auditorium where the official program was held.
World Vision Solomon Islands, one of the main advocates for gender equality, women's rights and protection - ensuring women are free from violence, also participated in the event.
This year’s theme is “Women in leadership, achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world.”
In her Keynote address, Minister of Women Youth, Children and Family Affairs Hon. Freda Tuki said that addressing violence against women and girls remains the core priority of the Solomon Islands Government.
Hon. Tuki also challenged everyone to continue learning about the impacts of the COVID 19 Pandemic.
“The newness of the pandemic means everyone has to learn quickly and to learn”
“It is not only about the challenges brought by the pandemic but learning to do things differently and to challenge the impacts of the pandemic especially on women and girls,” she said.
Hon. Tuki also comments on the work of the Gender-Based Violence Sub-Committee that is chaired by her ministry.
“I want to commend the work of Gender-Based Violence Sub-Committee that was established under the International Sub Committee and Chaired by my Ministry in ensuring protection and access to essential services for victims and survivors of gender-based violence during this pandemic”.
“The Sub Committee is made of the National Referral Network commonly known as SAFENET and other relevant stakeholders,” she said.
The committee is also working to respond to sexual exploitation, forced marriage and human trafficking especially in communities with high levels of migration-related to extractive industries. Meanwhile, speaking on behalf of rural women Mrs Sese urged the government to recognise women in rural communities by equipping them with practical skills in agriculture.
“Women in the rural areas are lacking knowledge on agriculture where this is the baseline to the economy. Government through the agriculture sector must ensure training is provided to them so that they can be equipped with agriculture knowledge.” She emphasized.