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07.06.2006 Politics

Women urged to fight for seats in forthcoming district elections

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Wa, June 7, GNA - Aspiring female district assembly candidates has been urged to muster courage and confidence to get themselves elected, instead of lobbying to be made government appointees to the assemblies. The call was made by participants at a one-day seminar on "Promoting Women Candidates for District Assemblies" in the Upper West Region held in Wa on Tuesday.

The participants, who were made up of District Chief Executives, Presiding members, New Patriotic Party constituency Chairmen and organizers in the Upper West Region, also urged Governance institutions to join forces and organize workshops to groom interested women to assume leadership positions at all levels of governance. They observed that, some women, who occupied leadership positions, behaved like tyrants and could, therefore, not serve as role models to encourage other women, who wanted to aspire to the top of the social ladder or engage in politics.

The seminar was organized by the Upper West Rural Women Association and sponsored by IBIS, Ghana, a Danish Non-Governmental Organization. It offered a platform for the participants to exchange views and interact on how best to improve the representation of women at the district and unit committee levels in the forthcoming local level elections.

In an address read for him, Mr Ambrose Dery, the Regional Minister said the involvement of women in decision-making at the Metropolitan, Municipal and district assemblies would enhance the quality of deliberations and enrich the policies and programmes of the assemblies. The active participation of women, he noted, would require hard work to overcome cultural, religious, political and socio-economic barriers that hindered their involvement in the decision-making process at the various levels of governance.

Mrs Clare Der, the Regional Director of the National Commission on Children urged Churches to assist aspiring women candidates to advertise themselves for the district level elections.

Speaking on the "Role of Women in Governance", she called on chiefs and men in general to recognize women and support their views in whatever roles they may find themselves.

Aspiring women politicians, she said, should be morally upright and cultivate the trust of their husbands, generate income to raise their circumstances and learn to feel confident.

Mrs Cate Bob-Miliar, Regional Director of the National Council of Women and development, observed that low self-esteem, inadequate confidence building skills and the "pull her down" attitude of women, were the major causes of their low participation in politics. She announced that 96 women would be contesting the district level elections in the region in august this year and urged the Municipal and District Chief Executives in the region to support them to win their electoral seats.

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