UN Women Exec. Dir. on Issues Women Face Around the World

Steve Adubato goes one-on-one with Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women, to discuss the challenges women face across the world including violence, safety and economic security, as well as the UN Women’s goals for gender equality.

3/8/18 #2119






"Hi, I'm Steve Adubato. This is the Tisch WNET Studio, here in Lincoln Center. It is my pleasure to introduce Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, is Executive Director of UN Women, and also the former Deputy President in South Africa, from 2005 to 2008. I want to thank you so much, and if I mispronounced your name, I apologize. You said in South Africa there's a pronunciation that I missed. What is it? Yeah. "Mlambo... [phonetic-click] noo-kah". [phonetic-click] noo-kah"? [phonetic-click] noo-kah". It's the language that is spoken in the Black Panther film. It's Xhosa. Is that right? Yeah. So I'm one of the few people who really understand here in the US what they are talking about when they switch into vernacular. You...? I'm gonna ask you about South Africa in a minute, a new president there as we do this program. But this initiative, UN Women, describe it. UN Women is one of the agencies of the United Nations, established to address issues of gender inequality in the world. Relatively young, seven years old. And involved in addressing issues of ending violence against women, all over the world. And women's economic empowerment, and income security for women. We help governments pass policies... Hmm. ...that enable them to finance and fund advancement of women, whether it is providing schools that have got latrines, so that girls don't stay at home because of it. Hmm. Subsidizing transport systems so that girls and children in general don't have to walk long ways. We're also involved in women's peace and security all over the world. As you know, there's lots of conflict. We're also involved in addressing challenges that were facing humanitarian settings, working alongside our bigger organizations that do relief, but we look at, in particular, the issues that impact on women in those situations. So, I'm thinking about this. The #MeToo movement right now, is it a worldwide thing? Is it a thing going on in the United States? It's... there's different versions of it. It's not called #MeToo all over the world. It is not? It is not called #MeToo all over the world, but it's good to have the #MeToo as you have it in the US, because it's got greater visibility, meaning it's much more strong and visible. And of course, the people that are associated with #MeToo attract a lot of media, which is good, because then it profiles the issue. But women all over the world have safe spaces where they come together and talk about the experiences that they've had, and seek remedies together. What many women in the world have not been very successful, in which the #MeToo movement in the US has helped with is holding the perpetrators accountable, and ensuring that impunity is addressed. And that..."