Executive Director to visit Democratic Republic of the Congo


Marking her first official visit to the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka will begin her mission on 1 December. During the four-day trip, she will partake in both high-level advocacy and grass-roots efforts to advance gender equality in the country and around the world.

UN Women will collaborate with the country’s Ministry of Gender, Family and Children, Office of the Prime Minister, Office of the Presidential Adviser on Sexual Violence and Child Recruitment in the DRC, other UN agencies and civil society organizations and private sector organizations to organize a series of events, including a high-level advocacy event hosted by Prime Minister Matata Ponyo, which will take place near the end of her trip. It will focus on the gender-centred Sustainable Development Goal 5 under the theme “Gender Equality and the Empowerment Women: A Commitment for Action,” to garner support, consensus and political commitment among ministries, UN agencies, non-governmental organizations and development partners. A central message is the centrality of gender equality and women’s empowerment in achieving the other 16 SDGs in DRC and worldwide.

Prime Minister Ponyo, civil society and UN agency representatives, donors and other high-level government officials will discuss strategies to ensure women’s full participation and equal opportunities for leadership in political, economic and public life, and universal access to sexual and reproductive health services. 

On 2 and 3 December, the Executive Director will meet with survivors of sexual and gender-based violence at Panzi Hospital in Bukavu, which offers specialized treatment for survivors of sexual violence. She will also interact with civil society organizations that are addressing this important issue in Eastern DRC.

Returning to Kinshasa on 3 December she will partake in an interactive discussion with members of civil society in Kinshasa to discuss their partnership with UN Women and exchange ideas on solutions for women’s empowerment in DRC.

In Kinshasa, on the eve of the High-Level Advocacy evening, Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka will join thousands of Congolese women, men and youth on 4 December as they gather to launch 16 days of activism in DRC and fight gender-based violence.