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Non-prioritisation of gender issues in party manifestos impeding progress – Women Groups

Some women groups in the country have called on political parties to prioritise gender issues in their manifestos.

According to these women groups, the reason Ghana is not making giant strides in gender equality is because political parties do not champion gender issues in their manifestos.

Ms Patricia Acquah, Public Relations Officer, Young Urban Women Movement (YUWM), said that a look at some policies in political party manifestoes testify that the parties were not ready to make the change they promise the citizens, especially on gender issues.

Examining a policy like increasing women’s representation in parliament, Ms Quansah said if political parties really wanted to increase women’s representation, the easiest way was to remove the financial burden that deterred women from contesting.

She said it is trite knowledge that Ghana was a patriarchal society where economic resources were concentrated in the hands of men, a situation that put women at a disadvantage in activities that involved money.

It is
therefore proper that the parties do away with those financial obligations to enable more women to contest, she said.

‘The amount of money political parties levy to allow people to contest on their ticket is very high. How would a woman who is not financially stable be able to take part in such a race? So, they should reduce it so that more women can come up and take up those positions.’ Ms Acquah said.

Her comments are part of the views sampled by the Ghana News Agency (GNA) from various women groups to mark the International Women’s Day celebration commemorated all over the world on 8th March 2024, on the theme, ‘Inspire Inclusion’.

Madam Grace-Tera Korsinah, President, Kingdom Women Diplomat (KWD), and one who is passionate about gender and women empowerment issues, who also shared her views with the GNA, noted that Ghana one of the countries that had ratified various treaties aimed at increasing the role of women in national development.

She said ratifying those treaties were laudable, but the impleme
ntation had been left in the hands of gender activists, mostly women, to champion.

She said these women had indeed made major inroads but unfortunately, deep seated inequalities remained.

Ms Korsinah said she recently read a report which indicated that women’s representation in Ghana’s parliament was only 14.5 per cent and those in management positions in the private sector was about 27 per cent.

She said the situation was discouraging, considering what Ghana stood to achieve in gender equity.

According to her, many studies have proven how advantageous it is for organizations and nations when women are empowered and amplified to occupy certain key positions and wonders why issues of gender and real women empowerment is not mainstreamed in political agenda.

She also indicated that that the United Nations, the greatest engine, championing the gender equality globally, acknowledged the fact that gender equality was not only a fundamental human right, but a necessary foundation for a peaceful, prosperous and
sustainable world.

She therefore called on political parties to make gender equality a real agenda on their table.

Source: Ghana News Agency