Africa: Females

International Development written question – answered on 7th October 2008.

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Photo of Claire Curtis-Thomas Claire Curtis-Thomas Labour, Crosby

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development pursuant to the answer of 19 June 2008, Official Report, columns 1167-8W, on Africa: females, what programmes his Department is supporting which promote the rights and political participation of women in Africa in 2008-09.

Photo of Douglas Alexander Douglas Alexander The Secretary of State for International Development

The Department for International Development (DFID) is supporting a number of innovative and successful programmes in African countries that address women's rights and political participation.

DFID supports Kenya's Political Empowerment Programme which provided support to women candidates contesting parliamentary and civic seats in the December national elections. There are now more women in both parliament and local councils: the number of elected women in Parliament increased from nine in the last Parliament to 15 currently in 2008.

In Nigeria we are working with other donors and Nigerian civil society organisations, and DFID funded programmes have provided detailed analysis on the impact of the African Protocol on the Rights of Women and the adoption of the convention to eliminate discrimination against women (CEDAW). This will facilitate Nigerian civil society organisations to develop advocacy strategies aimed at passing legislation that better protects women's rights. In Sierra Leone DFID has committed long-term funding (2006-10) to support Women's Access to Justice. This programme has supported the introduction of Circuit Courts to reach remote areas, improving women's access to justice.

Further Information is available on the DFID website using the links provided in the answer of 19 June 2008, Hansard, columns 1167-8W.

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