IWD: Women urged to explore digital finance and tech opportunities

Written By: Ronald Owili

PHOTO | BBC

Women have been challenged to explore available opportunities in digital finance and technology which have recorded a sharp growth during COVID-19 pandemic.

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As the world marks International Women’s Day, speakers at the DADA Connect virtual meeting organized by Stanbic Bank said digital finance and technology offer a chance for employment and entrepreneurship opportunities on the back of the health pandemic which has exacerbated the gender gap as women have been impacted the most when it comes to job losses and missed opportunities.

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“When we look at women in need of capital or needing to be closer to home, technology answers all these questions. There is nothing wrong with entrepreneurship or ideas or the hard work of most women. The problem is women have not had a tool that allows them to balance,” said Sheila M’Mbijjewe, Central Bank of Kenya Deputy Governor.

M’Mbijjewe revealed that out of the 1400 CBK workforce, women make up 47% of the workforce, while 46% occupy managerial positions.

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At Stanbic Bank, top managerial positions are split between men and women.

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“Stanbic Bank has been ahead in promoting women. Women play a critical role in all the major department at the bank,” said Rose Kimotho, Stanbic Bank Kenya Non-Executive Director.

According to Global Wage Report by the international Labour Organization, vulnerable groups who include women who form the bulk of those who earn minimum wage were largely affected by job cuts last year as a result of the pandemic.

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ILO statistics indicate that, an estimated 327 million workers globally, 152 million of whom are women are paid at their countries’ minimum wage or below representing about 19% of the world’s wage earners.

Speakers at the virtual meeting further called for advocacy and enactment of laws that will promote gender parity in workplaces.

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