Beijing +25 CSO National Reviews to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action
Remarks by UN Women Nepal Deputy Representative at Beijing +25 CSO National Reviews to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, October 2019, Kathmandu, Nepal
Date: Wednesday, November 13, 2019
I would also like to express my appreciation for the organising of provincial level consultations prior to the gathering here in Kathmandu. UN Women, together with the entire UN system and the Government of Nepal, is committed to the core principle of the Sustainable Development Goals – to leave no one behind. Bringing the voices of women from all over Nepal together in the Beijing +25 process is a very important step in promoting this principle. While ensuring that women from all over Nepal are engaged in the movement, is a crucial first step, we also need to make sure that the voices of women of all ages and in all their diversity are heard.
Since 20017, UN Women has brought feminist leaders across generations together through “thought workshop” dialogues as Bharatiji highlighted to reflect on the journey since Beijing and plan a road map for the future along with other social movements.
As highlighted by Shanthaji, the Beijing +25 commemoration, and the Generation Equality Forum to be organised by UN Women in 2020, will be a diverse and intergenerational convening. To build for the future, we must bring together the young generations of women’s rights and gender equality activists with the visionaries who crafted the Beijing Platform for Action. It is only if we bring women of all ages and from different social, economic and geographic backgrounds, with their different experiences and skills, together that we can reach our goals:
- A Nepal, and a world, that is free from gender-based violence and violence against women and girls.
- In which all women and girls have access to inclusive, equitable and quality health care and education.
- In which all women are economically empowered.
- In which no woman or girl faces discrimination in policy or public life.
- And in which all women and girls can meaningfully participate and lead on an equal basis, in all aspects of life, as envisioned in CEDAW, the Beijing Declaration and the Sustainable Development Goals.
The draft outcome document of the Beijing +25 Asia-Pacific ministerial pre-negotiations raises concern about the rising inequalities within and between countries in the region, and the uneven progress towards gender equality. The document flags that multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination, exploitation, marginalisation, subordination of women and girls persist, and that the Asia-Pacific region is currently not on track to meet the targets under SDG 5 on gender equality and women’s empowerment. It is our shared responsibility, as women’s rights and gender equality activists, to hold decision-makers accountable and work together to achieve promises made. We cannot accept any regressions.
For this, I want to highlight the fact that Beijing +25 and the Generation Equality Forum is not just about celebrating how far we have come since 1995. It is equally, importantly, about stock-taking, renewed commitments, and the formation of new coalitions to advance voice, choice and security for women and girls.
As recently highlighted by the Executive Director of UN Women, we need all stakeholders to work together with urgency, in our different spheres, in our places of work, in our schools, in our government departments, in our homes and in our communities.
To realise Nepal’s ambitious commitments to gender equality, as set out in the Constitution, we need a strong feminist movement and a civil society working together.
UN Women is committed to working together and supporting women’s rights and gender equality activists and movements in Nepal to achieve substantive equality. If we all work together, we can make 2020 a historic year for repositioning gender equality and promote Nepal’s inter-generational and diverse feminist movement as a global example for change.
The next generation of women and girls cannot wait. The time for action is now.
- Remarks by Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Executive Director of UN Women, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, at the event Gender Equality: from the Biarritz Partnership to the Beijing +25 Generation Equality Forum on the margins of the 74th UN General Assembly