Gender Inequality and Social Institutions in the DRC

Central Africa
Congo (Kinshasa)

The analysis of the current context in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) makes obvious the existing persistence gender imbalance in all the domains of economical, social, cultural and political development. Congolese women constitute 53% of the DRC population: their visibility and contribution to food security for the survival and running of the Congolese society is undeniable and internationally recognised.

However, studies and recent investigations show that the position of Congolese women in several domains of national life remains preoccupying low in comparison with men. Access of women to decision making tables, as well as to national economical resources and production factors remains very limited. The situation has deteriorated in latter years with the negative effects of wars in repetition, to the current persistent insecurity.

In fact, 61.2% of Congolese women live underneath the poverty threshold against 51.3% of men, while 44% of women cannot attain economical timeliness1, 2, and 4. Furthermore, in the DRC, the situation of gender-based violence; particularly domestic violence on women and young girls is very worrying. Collected national data on various forms of Violence Against Women (VAW) demonstrates how it strongly correlates with under-development (human, economic, social and infrastructure). These statistics show how women are vulnerable, and they illustrate the numerous abuses committed by men against women because of the dominant position conferred to men by the society and the inferior status of women in the DRC.