The European Union (EU) delegation in Namibia has joined forces with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) to combat gender-based violence (GBV) in the country. A contribution agreement was signed on Wednesday, marking a significant step in the collaborative effort to promote gender equality and address GBV in Namibia.
According to Namibia Press Agency (NAMPA), the EU has contributed NAD 28 million towards a national campaign aimed at reducing GBV and fostering gender equality. The agreement, titled ‘Gender Equality/Combating Gender-Based Violence,’ was signed by EU Ambassador to Namibia, Beatriz Martins, and UNFPA assistant representative Loide Amkongo.
Ambassador Martins emphasized the critical importance of the collective commitment to eradicating GBV. She stated that the agreement with UNFPA is meticulously structured, with defined objectives and a comprehensive strategy to confront the widespread challenges faced by women and girls in Namibia. The overarching goal of the programme is to contribute to the reduction of GBV in targeted regions of Namibia by 2027.
UNFPA, as the UN’s sexual and reproductive health agency, works alongside the government and various partners to end preventable maternal deaths and combat GBV and harmful practices. Amkongo expressed that the agreement with the EU represents a significant step forward in addressing one of the most pressing issues in Namibia, particularly impacting the lives of women and girls. She highlighted the importance of this partnership, especially during the 16 days of activism against GBV.
The signing of the agreement, which took place at an event held at Hope Initiative Southern Africa in the capital, also coincided with the launch of the Combating GBV campaign. UNFPA contributed NAD 2.9 million to this campaign, which aims to address GBV at both national and subnational levels over the next 36 months.
Amkongo outlined that the strategic implementation of the programme would significantly impact communities, specifically in the Zambezi, Ohangwena, Khomas, Kunene, and Omaheke regions. These regions have been identified for targeted interventions based on critical gaps highlighted in the National Gender Policy and the National GBV Plan of Action. The programme’s comprehensive approach involves collaboration with government entities and civil society organizations, ensuring an inclusive and effective response to gender-based violence.