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Ghana Armed Forces launches gender policy

The Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) has officially launched its Gender Policy.

The document, unveiled under the theme: ‘Advancing Ghana Armed Forces Commitment to inclusiveness’, outlined the guidelines to enhance effective gender mainstreaming within the GAF.

Brigadier-General Anita Asmah, the Director General of the Department of Civilian Establishment, who gave an overview of the Policy at the launch, explained how the document provided a framework to effectively deal with gender discrimination and institutionalised gender equality.

‘The policy provides the opportunity to set guidelines for operations and environment within a gender-sensitive framework that allows for the elimination of any blockages to gender equality. Its goal is to eliminate gender discriminatory practices and ensure a gender-responsive GAF,’ she said.

Brig. Gen Asmah also explained how the five-chapter document would help guide the institution and formalisation of gender mainstreaming in all GAF activities, including training programmes,
planning, budgeting, policy and administration.

She said the policy would ensure equal representation and voice to males and females in decision-making at all levels as well as reduce the gender gap in recruitment, promotion and retention.

That, she said, was in accordance with the country’s adoption of several national and international legal instruments such as the Domestic Violence Act of 2007 (Act 732), the National Gender Policy of 2015 and the two National Action Plans (NAPs) on United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325 for the implementation of the Women Peace and Security Agenda.

In his address, Lieutenant General Thomas Oppong-Pepprah, the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), mentioned how the input and commitment made by personnel such as the late Major-General Constance Ejeane-Afenu helped to kick start the process.

‘I must mention the late Maj Gen Constance Edjeani-Afenu for her initiative, commitment and resilience in tirelessly contributing her bit towards gender mainstreaming in the
Ghana Armed Forces. It is her initiative along with the support and commitment of her other senior female colleagues and other individuals that have culminated into the realisation of this policy…,’ he said.

The Ghana Armed Forces Gender Policy was promulgated by the Ministry of Defence on 29th December 2023. This was after two years of work by the Gender Policy Committee and other stakeholders and individuals.

The Ghana Armed Forces have made huge strides in empowering both women and men to ensure a well-balanced armed force. As of September 2023, the Ghana Armed Forces could boast of 35.3% females as military observers, 17.1%. Staff Officers and 15.7% of Formed Troops are females.

According to Group Captain Theodora Agornyo, the Gender Policy Advisor to the CDS, the policy would address issues pertaining to the role, contribution and inclusion of males.

Source: Ghana News Agency