Gender gaps found in budget implementation

By Jean d’Amour Mugabo
On 11 December 2017 at 11:30

Less women than men are engaged in income generating activities and the issue is blamed on local implementers of Gender Budget Statements (GBS).

An outreach conducted by Pro-Femmes Twese Hamwe in four districts namely Gatsibo, Gakenke, Ngororero and Nyaruguru has revealed that women are still spending much of their time doing household chores while more men appear in good income-generating jobs.

Sharing with the stakeholders about findings on gender gaps on Friday, Marguerite Mutumwinka, 2nd Vice President of Pro-Femmes Twese Hamwe, said gender equality principles should be respected in planning and budgeting at national and local levels.

“We examined how this principle is being implemented in four districts and we found gender gaps. This is what we want to discuss with different stakeholders including government and non-governmental institutions and to jointly chart the solutions,” she said.

“Budget implementers are not duly considering the principle of gender responsive budgeting. Budgeting guidelines also have gaps and we want them addressed over time. GBS is in place but there are still gaps.”

Rebecca Asiimwe, Director of Gender Mainstreaming Unit at Gender Monitoring Office (GMO), said national planners do Gender responsive budgeting but local implementers are yet to fully understand it.

“More sensitization is required and it is a process towards change. With Government commitment to fighting gender-based violence, increase girls in science and technical education, we shall be able to address gender gaps in budget implementation,” she said, adding that more women in professions like construction and plumbing will help them make more money than many are making in subsistent jobs.

She said analyzing budgets from a gender perspective is integral to understanding the extent of gender mainstreaming within projects and policies.

Rwanda’s Organic Budget Law of 2013 on State Finances and Property enforces accountability on financing for gender equality and provides for mandatory gender responsive planning and reporting through Gender Budget Statements.

Skills gap

Nelson Muhayimana, Nyaruguru District’s Planner, said they consider gender principles promotion in the projects but there are still areas of jobs in which few women appear to have the skills required.

“We consider gender equality in jobs allocation. For example, we targeted to give women 50% of supervision jobs in the last fiscal year and we got 60%. However, they are technical jobs like site design, mapping of roads and terraces sites in which women stood at 33% because they did not have the required skills yet we had to examine applicants’ competencies,” he said.

Muhayimana said women also have potentials to acquire technical skills and encouraged more sensitization to make women understand that they able and should look for jobs generating better income than they are making.

GMO report on Gender and Access to Finance released in March this year shows that female accessing formal financial services have almost doubled from 36% in 2012 to 63% in 2016 although it remains below compared to males whose proportion increased from 51% to 74% in the same period.

Women having access to informal financial services have decreased from 32% in 2012 to 24% in 2016 compared to males who dropped from 27% in 2012 to 17% in 2016.

Women having ATM debit cards were 40% compared to 60% men in 2016. A bigger disparity appeared in rural areas with men and women standing 76.1% and 23.9% respectively while it was at 52.8% and 47.2% among urban population. The uptake of mobile money transactions stood at 46% and 33% of men and women respectively.

Rebecca Asiimwe, Director of Gender Mainstreaming at GMO
Marguerite Mutumwinka, 2nd Vice President of Pro-Femmes Twese Hamwe