Bandana Rana, Civil Society Representative from Nepal, addressed the Global Leaders meet on gender equality and women empowerment, a commitment to action co-hosted by People's Republic of China.
Some 80 heads of the states and government also addressed the global meeting in New York. Deputy Prime Minister Prakash Man Singh also addressed the global meeting.
The global leaders pledged to end the discrimination against women by 2030 and adopt concrete and measurable action to kick start rapid change in their countries.
"We know that despite government obligations to international gender equality agreements in the last 15 years no country has achieved the equality conditions necessary for women and girls to live their lives fully, freely and securely. For the Post 215 development agenda to be truly transformative it must transform the lives of women and girls.It must position gender equality at the core of development priorities. This includes, but is not limited to women’s economic rights, women’s and girl’s participation in decision making, including in peace building, and the elimination of violence against all women and girls, including sexual and gender-based violence and harmful practices which are elementary for the transformational change that this agenda sets out to achieve," said Rana.
Rana said that the links between gender-based violence and impunity, militarization, military spending, forced migration, displacement, and the prevalence of small arms must be addressed if meaningful gains are to be made. Furthermore, a genuine new global partnership must have those most marginalized, at the center, and ensure truly democratic processes, transparent decision-making and accountability at national, regional and global levels.
"Today more than ever the civil society emerges as a fundamental agent of change to advance Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment. The contribution of civil society and women’s organizations at the grassroots level will be key to the implementation and monitoring of the 2030 Agenda. It is the civil society and NGOs who have been the backbone of significant development activities in most developing countries. Their work should be recognized and an enabling environment created for them to be able to contribute even more meaningfully to ensure that the transformative normative commitments of the SDGs are implementable on the ground. Your political will must address the funding gap with increased, sustainable and secure funding to make gender equality a reality," said Rana.
She said that the leaders present here can make that possible with your collective courage and commitment. "We hope that the future leaders that will gather here in 2030 will celebrate the accomplishment and follow the legacy that you have so historically charted.May the commitments expressed by you leaders today light the way to make the promise of the SDGs a reality for women and girls the world over to build sustainable change," said Rana.