Otiko Calls For Gender Balance

Otiko Afisa Djaba giving a certificate to one of students from the Accra Girls Debate team

The Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Otiko Afiza Djaba, has urged stakeholders to take resolute steps to project the invaluable contributions of all women and girls, particularly rural women in Ghana.

The sector minister said while there has been considerable improvement in Ghana in the quest for gender equality and equity, issues of negative traditional and socio-cultural practices need to be addressed in order for Ghana to meet its targets.

“There are still complex issues of male dominance and patriarchy that need to be addressed to step up our collective efforts towards achieving, ‘Planet 50-50 by 2030’ agenda,” she said.

She said actions that seek to challenge the negative traditional and socio-cultural practices that hinder the ambitions of women and girls in rural areas will not only help create gender balanced leadership in communities, but also create flexible cultures in line with the focus of the international community.

Ms. Afisa Djaba made the call when she launched the International Women’s Day 2017 on the global theme, “Women in the Changing World of Work: Planet 50-50 by 2030, and country theme, “Economic Empowerment for Rural Women: A tool for Sustainable Development in a Changing World of Work.”

International Womens’ Day is used to draw the world’s attention to areas requiring further action and accelerated gender parity.

She said the theme reflects the importance of focusing on helping rural women and girls who are often forgotten in national development to achieve their ambitions through stakeholders’ recognition of their valuable contribution to the national economy.

Outlining the activities for the week-long event in all the regions, Ms Afisa Djaba said various awareness creation exercises like walks, radio talk shows with women panelists and clean-up exercises have been earmarked for the celebration.

“This year’s March 8th International Women’s’ Day Celebration was preceded with a debate on the topic, “Women are the Engine for Accelerated Development” by students of Accra Academy and Accra Girls Senior High Schools,” she said.

Ms. Afisa Djaba presented certificates and plaques to the two schools for their efforts.

She said the celebration would be climaxed in a grand durbar at Prestea Huni-Valley in the Western Region.

She noted that the choice of Prestea Huni-Valley was to use the occasion to highlight the menace of galamsey and its implications for women and children.

By Jamila Akweley Okertchiri