WFD supports women’s political participation and leadership so they can influence decision-making and bring about positive change. Not only do women have a right to occupy their seats at the decision-making table, women’s political leadership results in better outcomes for women and girls, as well as for the whole of society.
Under the WFD programme in Uganda, 30 women MPs participated in a parliamentary scrutiny and communications workshop. Building on past engagement, the workshop offered skills on effective committee work and impactful external communications. This includes questioning, and interviewing techniques, as well as public speaking skills. The participants were also trained on Westminster-style committee hearings and media interviews through practical components. With over half of women Members of the Parliament of Uganda elected for the first time in 2021, the workshop further presented an opportunity to review and assess current ways of working.
The mentorship was jointly delivered by WFD, Commonwealth Parliamentary Association UK (CPA UK), UN Women, and the Uganda Women Parliamentary Association (UWOPA) in Entebbe on 24th and 25th July 2022. The programme opened with an address from UWOPA Chairperson Hon. Sarah Opendi, WFD Country Representative, Joseph Munyangabo, UN Women Country Representative Adekemi Ndieli, and CPA UK delegation leader Kate Osamor MP.
The CPA UK delegation leader Kate Osamor MP stated:
“This workshop presents an exciting opportunity to reconnect with colleagues from the Parliament of Uganda and compare our approaches to scrutiny of government and media engagement. Commonwealth parliamentarians are a fantastic resource for one another, and sharing experiences helps us in fulfilling our roles as legislators and representatives.”
This is not the first time WFD Uganda has supported women MPs to effectively conduct their roles. Following the 2021 elections in Uganda, WFD in partnership with UN Women and UWOPA conducted mentoring sessions for 30 new MPs. These sessions provided an opportunity for the new leaders to engage with experienced female politicians. The seasoned leaders provided guidance to the new MPs on how they can effectively conduct their duties in parliament, especially on championing women and youth issues.
WFD will continue to facilitate learning and sharing of experiences between Uganda and UK MPs. Follow up activities will include remote mentorship, feedback from women MPs, and coordinated support to the participating members in committees and parliamentary forums.