The Mineworkers Union of Namibia (MUN) has taken a significant step towards gender equality by amending its constitution to include a dedicated structure for women’s affairs.
This was done during the union’s elective congress, which took place at Ongwediva over the weekend.
Hileni Malakia, who has been at the forefront of pushing for the amendment, says this is a significant step towards ensuring that women in the mining industry are adequately represented and their interests are protected.
“This will address women’s issues fully compared to now. Imagine you have an issue of harassment and you report it to a man who will not do justice to it. To men that could be a small issue. This will amplify women’s voices,” she said.
She said the move has been approved by the industry.
Currently, those who have been pushing for the structure, including Malakia, will serve as interim leaders until the next elective congress.
Meanwhile, three women made it to the MUN central committee.
They are Rebecca Mbengele as secretary, Maria Shikongo as treasurer, and Delila Tseibes as deputy treasurer.
The elective congress also saw the return of former president Ismael Kasuto.
Kasuto served as MUN president from 2013 to 2015 before becoming the president of the National Union of Namibian Workers.
Desley Somseb was elected as the union’s new vice president, Abraham Baisako as deputy secretary, George Ampweya as general secretary, with Paul-Smockey Situmba as his deputy.