ONGWEDIVA - President of the Association of Local Authorities in Namibia (ALAN) Katrina Shimbulu will chair the REFELA in SADC over the next three years.
Shimbulu won recent REFELA elections and she will be deputised by Patricia Nkhono from Malawi.
Other countries to serve on the REFELA executive committee are, Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe. She was appointed at the two day, first ever REFELA conference organised by the United Cities and Local Governments in Africa (UCLGA-SARO) in Windhoek this week.
She was also tasked to lead the Namibian delegation to the upcoming Africities Summit scheduled for Marrakesh in Morocco in November.
The aim of the conference was to adopt and review REFELA’s declaration and objections since its establishment in Morocco in 2011.
The conference also sought to commit SADC countries to aspire to the realisation of women in local government positions.
“We reaffirm our obligation to galvanise women to attain total economic development, fight gender based violence, promote women and children rights, fight for equity and deliver real empowerment in our lifetime,” the newly elected REFELA president said in a statement.
Centred on women empowerment and development, REFELA seeks to provide a forum for local elected women leaders to showcase their achievements in areas such as good governance and sustainable human development.
It provides a platform for local elected leaders to exchange and tackle problems they encounter when carrying out their duties.
“We also want to strengthen women’s leadership at local level and develop good governance practices to help reduce social disparities and achieve the Millennium Development Goals,” Shimbulu said.
Equally, REFELA strengthens networking amongst local elected women in the SADC region as a means to boost advocacy, political dialogue, communication, information exchange, capacity building and professional development.
Caption (Katrina Shimbulu jpg):