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In Uganda, Women Leaders Cross Political Party Lines to Build Alliances
Strengthening the women’s leagues is critical to guaranteeing women’s inclusion in the political process. To do this WDN, working with the WDN Uganda Country Chapter, hosted the Women’s League Leadership Academy, bringing together executive committee members from women’s leagues of six major political parties: the National Resistance Movement, Forum for Democratic Change, the Democratic Party, the Justice Forum, Uganda People’s Congress, and the People’s Progressive Party.
Based on an initial assessment of the women’s leagues conducted by WDN, Kah Walla, president of the Cameroon People’s Party and former presidential candidate, and Annet Doesberg, who lead the women’s wing of the Christian Democratic Appeal party in the
Walla and Doesberg also shared their personal experiences in supporting women candidates, both from a ruling party and opposition party perspective. Walla discussed her experiences as a candidate for the president of
The academy also provided an opportunity for the different political parties to foster collaboration and encourage open communication across party lines. Women from opposing parties were able to openly express their concerns with the ruling party, and pledged to work together in to advocate on issues facing female constituents.
Participants were extremely grateful to WDN and the Uganda Chapter for providing a forum that allowed them to communicate honestly and build a network of engaged leaders across party lines, with one participant stating, “I really want to thank WDN for this workshop because it opened our eyes. We should form a strong network of all the six active parties- that is the only way to go forward.”
In addition to meeting regularly to discuss electoral reforms and issues to present to the Parliament, the leagues pledged to collaboratively conduct WDN-supported women’s political education forums throughout the country, based on a successful WDN initiative in Cameroon. These commitments are a significant step forward in promoting women’s participation and engagement in