As part of the International Women’s Day celebrations, on 8th March 2021; the Kenyan government, in partnership with the East African Community, launched the 50 Million African Women Speak Project Networking Platform from the Kenya School of Government (KSG), Kabete Campus, Nairobi.
The 50 Million online platform is intended to support women empowerment initiatives by providing African Women Entrepreneurs with access to critical information on financial and non-financial services and providing opportunities for business networks among African Women Entrepreneurs.
The project is geared towards empowering millions of women in Africa to start, grow and scale up businesses by providing a one-stop shop.
The launch of the platform in Kenya was officiated by her Excellency Margaret Kenyatta, the First Lady of the Republic of Kenya, with Hon Christophe Bazivamo, EAC Deputy Secretary-General in charge of Productive and Social Sectors.
First Lady Margaret Kenyatta encouraged more women to actively seek elective and other positions of leadership both at national and county levels.
The Ministry of Public Service and Gender Cabinet Secretary, Prof. Margaret Kobia, said this year’s International Women’s Day (IWD) theme ‘Women in Leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world’, illustrates the urgency of putting women and gender equality at the core of recovery and bouncing back better.
Prof Kobia thanked various organizations that have supported the organisation of the International Day. Talking of the Kenyan Chapter of the 50 Million African Women Speak Platform launch, she appreciated the idea of launching it as the World is pushing for an equal future between men and women. She said to be hopeful that that initiative will improve women’s businesses and enhance their contribution to Kenya’s economic growth.
The Cabinet Secretary ended her remarks reiterating Kenyan commitment to stand on the right side of history in appreciating the role women play in development.
Hon. Christophe Bazivamo explained to the audience that leveraging technology has become an obligation in solving many issues that affect the world today. He noted that businesses that did not embrace technology during this period of covid-19 experienced severe consequences than those that leveraged technology.
Hon. Bazivamo is convinced that the Region is making the right step in empowering women in business on the African Continent. However, he recognized that any innovation comes with its challenges. He highlighted some challenges that need to be addressed for the platform to serve the purpose it is intended for optimally. He talked about the lack of ICT skills required in target women to operate the platform; limited access to computers or smartphones, lack of electricity required by users to recharge their ICT tools, especially in the rural areas and others.
However, the EAC Deputy Secretary-General reiterated that he has hope and belief in Africans’ capacity to solve challenges.
To learn more about the 50 Million African Women Speak online platform: