Former First Lady and President of 31st December Women’s Movement, Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings says if women are not encouraged to take up responsibilities, the country’s development will be stunted.
Nana Konadu said such encouragement could be achieved if both sexes see each other as partners instead of competitors.
Men and women should learn to collaborate in all sectors of society to achieve women empowerment, she said.
Nana Konadu made the call when she delivered a lecture at the Takoradi Polytechnic as part of activities marking the 2013 SRC week celebrations last Monday.
The President of the DWM, who spoke on the theme Empowerment of the 21st Century Woman, said female enrolment and achievement must be achieved at all levels of society in accordance with Vision 2020 principles, noting that empowerment of women is key to the achievement of results in every country.
She said Vision 2020 set a target of improving the health and nutritional status of women because a healthy woman brings forth healthy children and thus a healthy family.
Women, she noted, must be encouraged to access productive resources such as capital and technology.
The former First Lady called on women to be formidable and embrace the Decision Factor – which is a strategic decision you take to better yourself. This, she said, must be followed by a systematic audit of the strategic decision you have taken.
Touching on discipline, Nana Konadu called on all students to learn to be different.
“Do not dress irresponsibly and call it fashion. Learn to be different.”
Nana Konadu praised the late Margaret Thatcher for changing the political paradigm in the United Kingdom.
She acknowledged that the late Thatcher made mistakes like all humans, stressing that the former British Prime Minister should be celebrated because she served as a major encouragement to many women.
“She was strong and formidable and led the UK as well as all the countries of the Commonwealth,” Nana Konadu stated.
The former First Lady also encouraged the youth to learn to play musical instruments as it helps to focus the brain academically. “It helps your ability to think and work,” she said.
Present at the ceremony were the Rector of Takoradi Polytechnic, Reverend Professor Daniel Agyepong Nyarko, the Vice Rector, Reverend Dr John Frank Eshun and Sylvia Oppong Mensah, the Registrar. DWM General Secretary, Sylvia Ahorlu and DWM Project’s Director, Peace Aryee accompanied Nana Konadu.