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MP Okia Warns Against Women Misusing Empowerment to Belittle Husbands


Joanne Okia MP Madi Okollo
PHOTO — X/Joanne Okia

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The Woman Member of Parliament in Madi Okollo district, Honorable Joanne Aniku Okia, has urged women to use their empowerment wisely and avoid using it as a means to belittle their husbands. This call comes amidst a concerning rise in Gender-Based Violence (GBV) cases within the district. According to a recent survey conducted by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), physical violence against women and girls aged 10-59 is predominant in the region, with Ogoko sub-county being particularly affected.

Aniku Okia delivered her plea during the district’s celebration of International Women’s Day, held at Chanya Baiya Primary School playground in Okollo sub-county. She emphasized that while the government has been actively empowering women and girls through various initiatives such as the Uganda Women Entrepreneurship Programme (UWEP) and the parish development model, it is crucial for women not to misuse this empowerment to engage in power struggles with their husbands.

This year marks the 47th anniversary of the United Nations’ declaration of March 8th as International Women’s Day, a global holiday celebrating significant achievements in the women’s movement.

Swaib Toko, the Resident District Commissioner of Madi Okollo, applauded the government’s efforts in championing women’s empowerment, particularly through affirmative action. He urged parents to prioritize the education of the girl child as a means to further promote gender equality.

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In addition, Ismail Drabe, the LC 5 Chairperson of Madi Okollo district, cautioned women against neglecting government programs designed to uplift their livelihoods. He encouraged women to exert effort in order to bring about positive change within their families.

The theme for this year’s International Women’s Day celebrations was “Accelerating Gender Equality through Economic Empowerment,” with national celebrations held in Katakwi District.

Table: Gender-Based Violence (GBV) Statistics in Madi Okollo District

Type of Violence Prevalence Most Affected Area
Physical Violence Predominant among women and girls aged 10-59 Ogoko sub-county
Emotional Violence Moderate District-wide
Economic Violence Limited Rural areas


Table: Empowerment Initiatives for Women and Girls

Initiative Purpose
Uganda Women Entrepreneurship Programme Promote women’s economic independence through entrepreneurship opportunities
Parish Development Model Support community development projects at the grassroots level
Affirmative Action Ensure equitable representation and participation of women in governance

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