The Department of Women, Youth and Persons with Disabilities (DWYPD) has commended the hosting of the BRICS Summit, which coincides with the National Women’s Month celebration in South Africa.
South Africa will be hosting the 15th Annual BRICS Summit from Tuesday, 22 August to Thursday, 24 August 2023.
The summit is an international gathering of BRICS heads of state providing a platform aimed at harnessing economic opportunities, post the COVID-19 pandemic.
DWYPD Director-General, Advocate Mikateko Joyce Maluleke, said although BRICS countries continue to play a critical role through their growing influence in the global economy, women continue to bear the brunt of poverty and inequality.
Maluleke said the hosting of the summit will continue to serve as a beacon of hope to many women who are calling for accelerated socio-economic opportunities, a “clarion call for change and unlocking of both economic and social opportunities”.
“This clear message from all South African women is in concurrence with the department’s objectives of leading socio-economic transformation, and in fulfilling the constitutional mandate that advocates for non-discrimination against anyone on the grounds of race; sex, gender or sexual orientation,” Maluleke said.
Maluleke also noted that evidence has shown that gender equality, particularly in education and employment, contributes to economic growth.
“As the BRICS Summit gets closer, we do believe that substantive issues and other policy matters will seek to bridge level of inequality through people to people exchange in the BRICS programme. This should be to the advantage of women and girls in rural areas, especially in accessing quality education, skills development and training, to bolster their opportunities in the employment sector,” Maluleke said.
In order to achieve the ambitious commitments of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Director-General said, the department encourages mainstreaming of gender issues in all scheduled BRICS business activities during and post the annual summit.