“Rwanda‘s quota system has resulted in 48% female legislature – the largest women representation in the world“, Kathleen Kennedy said during her speech at the Forum on Africa’s development in Taormina, Italy, the 2nd of October.
“Women’s presence in parliament – she added – helps normalize the idea that women are politicians, government officials and leaders and inevitably contributes to changing cultural and social perceptions of women”.
A very interesting moment of Kennedy’s speech was when she quoted a speech her father, Robert Kennedy, made in 1966 visiting the University of Cape Town in South Africa.
“I came here – Bob Kennedy said in 1966 – because of my deep interest and affection for a land settled by the Dutch in the mid-seventeenth century, then taken over by the British, and at last independent; a land in which the native inhabitants were at first subdued, but relations with whom remain a problem to this day; a land which defined itself on a hostile frontier; a land which has tamed rich natural resources through the energetic application of modern technology; a land which once imported slaves, and now must struggle to wipe out the last traces of that former bondage. I refer, of course, to the United States of America”.
Kathleen Kennedy continued in Taormina citing different data about Africa. One of these was this: “According to Freedom House, the number of countries classified as FREE is increasing. There were but four in the 1980s, to nine free and 23 partly free in 1992, and 11 free and 21 partly free in 2007″.
“Africa and Sicily partners together”, Kathleen Kennedy
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