Despite playing significant roles in the family and the society, women still have lower rates of property ownership than males. The patriarchal character of society frequently results in the marginalization of women. As a result, they struggle with gender-based violence, disease, and poverty.
The Taita Taveta council of elders has devised a new strategy for promoting women’s rights in rural communities in an effort to alter the narrative. The Njavungo Council now supports equal access to land ownership and inheritance for women.
The elders come from Voi, Mwatate, Wundanyi, and Taveta, according to Ronald Mwasi, a representative of Njavungo.
Read more about activists launching a regional campaign to protect women’s land rights.
“The right to property ownership is protected by the Constitution. We raise awareness of these rights at our sessions. Because of patriarchal norms and a lack of knowledge, many women are struggling to maintain land that is rightfully theirs, he claimed.
According to Mr. Mwasi, their goal is to persuade society to enhance land governance at the local level so that women can obtain land for mining, farming, and homebuilding. We came to the conclusion that women continue to face severe disadvantages. He claimed that they frequently discuss ways to increase public understanding of land inequities.
According to him, the campaign helps to meet the Sustainable Development Goals of ending hunger, poverty, and gender inequality.
The advocacy is also being explored at the regional level, according to Mr. Mwasi, who also serves as the secretary for Baraza Kuu la Wazee wa Pwani. Elders from the six coastal counties have joined forces to promote gender equality. Mombasa, Kwale, Kilifi, Tana River, and Lamu are the other counties.
The council’s spokesman, Mr. Mnjala Mwaluma, stated that in order to advance and enact gender-sensitive legislation, these rights must be protected. Everyone, regardless of gender, is entitled to inherit land. Such customs and culture are outdated.
Elders have joined the campaign against female genital mutilation in addition to land rights (FGM). They are collaborating with government organizations, such as the Anti-FGM Board, to combat the myths that encourage FGM. According to reports, FGM is still widely practiced in the region, particularly among the Maasai, Somali, and Taita in the county.
Because we now understand that FGM is violence against women and girls, we are helping the government, said Mr. Mnjala. Instead of making women and girls get the cut, the group has been promoting alternate rites of passage to empower them.