Demokratische Republik Kongo: Marie Bapu Bidibundu

Rural women are now respected, listened to, and emulate and train men in their rural settings.

— Marie Bapu Bidibundu

Marie Bapu Bidibundu from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) works with an NGO, Promotion de la Femme Rurale (Profer), in promoting and defending rural women’s socio-cultural and economic rights. Since 1978 she has raised awareness through writing, to awaken consciences. She works in harsh conditions to insure that people receive training without discrimination in various fields: health, literacy, access to resources and education in local languages. This has improved people’s status, work conditions and ability to defend and promote their rights against political and police harassment.

Marie Bapu Bidibundu is a jurist, an activist in human rights, a peace agent and a member of parliament. Marie insures that women and girls are trained in health and agricultural production, to fight hunger and poverty. She assists women to express themselves against violence and to fight repressive customs that hamper peace in their families and society. Rural women are now respected, listened to, and emulate and train men in their rural settings. They defend their rights, avoid revenge and peacefully resolve conflicts that arise in their areas. Moreover, during the peace negotiating process, women were also encouraged to participate in political negotiations aimed at stopping the war. These efforts were and are aimed at reunifying and reconciling the country’s warring factions to ultimately organize elections. She also participated in the Inter Congolese Dialogue, negotiations aimed to bring peace in DRC, she mobilized resources to peacefully negotiate during the ousting of Kasai people from the Shaba region in the 1990s crisis. This defused the hatred and revenge among the people. Her work is emulated by other women who are now involved in the research for peace and well being, in appropriating equity to men and women and other basic human rights.

Promotion de la Femme Rurale (Profer)