In the celebration of International Women’s Day on 8 March 2023, Somali Media Women Association (SOMWA) held an open panel discussion in Baidoa, the capital city of South West state, in Somalia. It was sponsored by UNSOM.
The meeting focused on promoting digital capacity building for women and girls and protecting their rights to safe digital platforms as around 50 attendees showed up at the gathering.
During the show, the participants shared their thoughts by discussing the economic and social inequality that Somali women are facing.
Shamso Shariif, one of the participants said one of the biggest obstacles preventing girls from developing their I.T skills is forced marriage after completing primary school suggesting that there is a need for awareness on early marriage.“The world has now moved to digital; we must move with it and share things with men. A society without women in its leadership will not progress.” Faduma Armiye Abdulahi, a women activist, also one of the panelists, said.
Feysal Mohamed, who was on the show, said he has been an IT teacher for more than a decade, and he knows that girls/women love to learn technology. but cultural repudiation holds them back from achieving their goals. Adding “Women and girls should be given educational and employment opportunities to develop themselves and society.”
Seynab Omar Ali of Bay Women has urged Somali women to keep learning in order to become financially self-sufficient and called on the federal and regional governments to prepare a protective law.
March 8th is recognized as International Women’s Day, a day to celebrate the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women and to raise awareness about the ongoing struggles for gender equality around the world. The day has been observed since the early 1900s and is recognized by the United Nations and many countries around the world as an official holiday.