, NAIROBI, Kenya, May 6 – American Ambassador Kenya Robert Godec has assured Kenyan women of his government’s support in their development agenda.
While expressing gratitude to President Uhuru Kenyatta for nominating women as Cabinet Secretaries in various positions, Godec said for the country to realise a vibrant economy it has to involve women in decision making.
Speaking during the launch of African Women Entrepreneurship Program (AWEP) at the US Embassy, he said leaders in Kenya had worked towards involving women in the development of the country but challenged them to do more.
“More women are taking part in the growth of this great country, they are creating jobs and they are helping to drive a new face in Kenya’s history and a new stronger rapid growing economy. We want to help and to be part of the progress this country is making,” he explained.
He said that African Women Entrepreneurship Program will work in strengthening more women, “and also in help define success through achieving their dreams.”
“We all know the important role played by women in the society, in our community and in the country. A country cannot achieve sustainable rapid growth if it leaves half of its population and I know Kenya is committed toward involving them in all sectors,” he said.
He further said that once women are empowered, they are able to speak against inequity. “When a woman earns more, she invests a greater percentage of her resources in her future and that of the family.”
Godec also said that since 2000, the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) has provided incentives for African countries to become more globally competitive by making economic and commercial reforms.
He said this opportunity has the potential to significantly boost trade between Africa and the US and to fuel innovation and job creation in Africa.
“The main incentive is the opportunity to export goods, from a list of nearly 6,400 qualifying items to the United States without paying import duties,” he said.
Speaking during the launch, AWEP Chief Executive Officer Nancy Gitonga asked women to take leadership roles so that they can be able to influence in the development of the country and the society.
“We are however facing challenges because of the many responsibilities we have as African women,” Gitonga lamented. She said lack of information among the women had made women to remain behind.