Stories written by Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka

A Life Without the Threat of Violence for Everyone: Leave no One Behind

The initial response to the outpouring of ‘#MeToo’ around the world has been of outrage at the scale of sexual abuse and violence revealed. The millions of people joining the hashtag tide showed us how little they were heard before. They poured through the floodgate, opening up conversations, naming names and bolstering the frailty of individual statements with the robustness of a movement.

Good Men Should Not be Quiet Spectators in Sexual Assaults

The pain and anger of more than a million people who tweeted #MeToo in the last week have crowded social media with personal stories of sexual harassment or assault.

Gender Equality Can Save Women’s Lives in Disasters – We must not miss the opportunity to set this right

Later this month, the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) will take place in Mexico. This meeting provides an important opportunity to reboot global progress on embedding gender equality in disaster risk management and redress deadly exclusion.

No Hidden Figures: Success Stories Can Help Girls’ STEM Careers

What makes a young girl believe she is less intelligent and capable than a boy? And what happens when those children face the ‘hard’ subjects like science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM)? A recent study, ‘Gender stereotypes about intellectual ability emerge early and influence children’s interests’ showed that by the age of 6, girls were already less likely than boys to describe their own gender as ‘brilliant’, and less likely to join an activity labelled for ‘very, very smart’ kids.

Time to Change Expectations: Zero Retribution to Zero Tolerance

The drugging, abduction and violent gang rape of a 16-year-old girl in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil calls us all to turn the tide of sexual violence against women and girls in Brazil and in every country in the world.

Opinion: Turn Words into Action Involving Women for Lasting Peace

We have recently celebrated the peace deal struck between the government in Colombia and the main guerrilla group. The deal reached on justice issues represents the clearest sign yet of a possible end to five decades of conflict.

Opinion: Women in Sport – Scoring for Equality

The Women’s World Cup has shown people everywhere what women athletes are all about: skill, strength, unity and determination. I extend my heartfelt congratulations to the winners – the team from the United States – and to all others who participated. You are inspiring millions of women and girls around the world to pursue their goals and dreams.

Opinion: Progress of the World’s Women 2015-2016: Transforming Economies, Realising Rights

Our world is out of balance. It is both wealthier and more unequal today than at any time since the Second World War.

Opinion: It’s Time to Step It Up for Gender Equality

If we look at the headlines or the latest horrifying YouTube clip, Mar. 8 – International Women’s Day – may seem a bad time to celebrate equality for women.

Opinion: Goals for Gender Equality Are Not a ‘Wish List’ – They Are a ‘To Do List’

This weekend, at the invitation of President Michelle Bachelet and myself, women leaders from across the world are meeting in Santiago de Chile. We will applaud their achievements. We will remind ourselves of their contributions. And we will chart a way forward to correct the historical record. History has not been fair to women – but then, women usually didn’t write it.

OPINION: Women Must Be Partners and Drivers of Climate Change Decision-Making

As leaders from around the world gather in Lima, Peru this week to discuss global cooperation in addressing climate change, a woman in Guatemala will struggle to feed her family from a farm plot that produces less each season.

OP-ED: Empowering Women, Empowering Humanity: Picture It!

Nearly 20 years ago, the world came together in Beijing for the Fourth World Conference on Women. There, 189 governments adopted a visionary roadmap for gender equality: the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action.

OP-ED: We Must Stand Up in Defence of Nigeria’s Abducted Schoolgirls

Today more than 200 schoolgirls will wake up to another day in an unthinkable nightmare. Three weeks ago, they were seized in the night by armed men dressed as soldiers who said they were there to protect them.

OP-ED: Women’s Empowerment Builds International Peace and Security

When war erupts, women are often the first to experience the harsh brutality and the last to be called to the peace table. A resolution adopted Friday by the U.N. Security Council moves us one step closer to the full participation of women as leaders for peace and security.