Abantu for development and its women’s right in Ghana who over ten years ago developped an instrument that could be effectively used to influence national priorities and processes to promote gender equality and equity has marked its 10 years anniversary of “The Women Manifesto for Ghana.
The document drew attention to the nature and magnitude of gender inequalities in Ghana and also influenced gender dynamics in the expression of citizenship at community and national level.
At the 10th anniversary celebration held here in Accra, Prof. Dzodzi Tsikata said the Manifesto provides platform for advocacy on a common set of demands for the achievement of women’s rights, gender equality and sustainable national development.
She said policy makers’ accountability is a key feature of the document, as policy makers are assessed based on where they stand in relation to the issues of concern to women.
Prof. Tsikata stressed that the Women’s Manifesto has seen some of the time lines in many of demands pass without being addressed but there has also been significant, encouraging and lasting progress made during the period to enhance women’s voice.
She said the document has gain recognition at the international level, by the national government and political parties as a significant and resolute advocacy document for gender equality worth their attention is a testimony that the energies have not been in vain.
The Executive Director of AWDF, Theo Sowa said Ghanaians should make good use of the manifesto and sue it to identify the importance of leadership in the country.
“There is the need for us as citizen to use the Manifesto to push politicians towards 2016 election, especially in terms of decision making process”
She a demonstrable progress must be made by the state and political parties to address the manifesto’s demand to exhibit more sensitivity to improved representation of women in decision making structures, party hierarchies and increased women’s participation in parliamentary and party elections.
As part of the manifesto way forward, she stated that targets for review of laws, especially in constitutional review process must ensure greater security and equity for women particularly in the context of marriage divorce, labour, capital and technology.
The Coalition on the Women’s Manifesto for Ghana WMC in a joint statement also express appreciation towards the progress that has been made including the passage of some landmark legislations such as the domestic violence Act, the Anti trafficking law and the persons with disability Act.
The Coalition is however strengthened by the news that progress is being made in the process of developing an affirmative action law for Ghana. In addition, the coalition is optimistic that parliament will pass into law the spousal property right bill now that it has been approved by cabinet.
Meanwhile convenor of NETRIGHT, Akua Britwum also acknowledges Abantu effort in leading the advocacy and capacity building on the participation of women in politics and decision making.
According to her the continued commitment of the WMC to Women’s activism in politics specifically and the promotion of gender equality principles in the democratic governance processes generally is admirable.
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