There are so many laws that contain the rights of women and have the goal to protect them. The problem is the legislative texts are written in high, formal and sometimes even incomprehensible words.Law seems to be a “jungle of words” and formulations most people do not understand. That’s not only a big problem I’ve witnessed in Namibia, but even in Germany the law is unclear and hard to understand for general people. I asked myself why the lawmakers use such difficult and complicated words to describe the rights, people should be aware of. Isn´t it ironic that the law is made for people and should protect them but on the other hand the people do not understand it because of the way it is written? Isn´t the goal of law, that people should understand their rights and should be able to exercise them?
At Sister Namibia I have the opportunity to create “Presentations” on topics of law. The Presentations will explain the difficult and long legislative texts of law in a short and simple way so that everyone is able to understand their rights. I just finished my first presentation on the “”CEDAW”- The Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination against Women-and learnt, there is a big necessity to reformulate the law in a language general people will understand. Without knowing what your rights are, you are not be able to exercise them. A lot of women still do not know about their basic rights. Often there is no punishment for the violation of women`s rights because the women do not know what has happened to them is wrong and therefore do not report the offence to the police, for example “child marriage”, “any kind of violation” or “widow grabbing”. As long as women do not know about their rights it is impossible to stop the violation of them.
I enjoy working for Sister Namibia and feel blessed to be part of the organization and be given the chance to inform women about the rights they have.
Written by Sonja Monger, Intern.