NDC (UK AND IRELAND) NOTCH UP FOR 2008 ELECTION – WOMENS DAY
Women day was marked as part of 2008 campaign activities of the UK and Ireland branch of the NDC. The main topic was “The role of women in politics”.
The guest speaker the Director of Legal Affairs Commonwealth Secretariat, the able, articulate, highly professional lawyer and champion of women's cause, Mrs Betty Mould Iddrissu.
At a parked public symposium at High Cross Church Hall in North London Mrs Betty Mould gave bravura perspectives to women's issues around the world and particularly Africa. She started by giving her own background of women activism.
That woman have been victim of adverse discrimination across the world and this is what led to the Beijing Declaration in 1996
She contrasted the role of women in the developed and the developing world, particularly, Africa. It was noted there are also difference between Southern and West Africa. There are more women in leadership roles in Southern than West Africa. She observed that in Africa, in conflict areas where women have fought side by side with men, there were more women seen in higher positions as direct results of their competence exhibited at battle front.
For examples in Ghana out over 230 DCEs only 10 are women and there are only a handful women ministers. The situation in southern Africa is different, where women are visible through all layers of leadership. In Namibia the minister for Justice is a woman and there are more women ministerial positions. In South Africa and Uganda their Vice Presidents are women.
Again in Ghana out the 1400 heads of industries within the association of Ghanaian Industries there are only two or so women. While women in other southern Africa can be noticed in leadership in governance, public life, business and other institutions because they fighting along side the men.
In West Africa sub-region only Liberian President, Mrs Ellen Johnson Sirleaf had made it to the Presidency. She buttressed her point with how Mrs Johnson Sirleaf fought shoulder to shoulder with men during the civil war. She asserts that the Mrs Georgina Wood, the chief justice, though highly qualified was appointed through intense lobbying by women groups.
She said it is time to do more for the Ghanaian woman. Mrs. Iddrissu said she is not particularly enthusiastic about the ideas of quotas and positive discrimination but believe that women should be able to achieve their potential by mainstreaming gender issues in all policies and practices.
Mr Fritz Baffour, Media Consultant and NDC parliamentary candidate for Ablekuma South, also acknowledged the role women have played in the party. He contended more women in leadership roles could enhance human development. He said women could better police this election on the Election Day because they have eyes for details and more disciplined than men. She challenged women to seek their right place by battling shoulder to shoulder with the men.
Miss Bea Damanya, former Vice Chair noted the UK and Ireland branch has always supported and will continue to support gender equality. Prof Mills has promised to right the wrongs to women in his administration and the branch is in full support of this. Miss Damanya therefore called on women to arise to the challenge of nation building in politics.
The moderator of the event was the vice chair of the branch, Joe Gans-Lartey.
NDC! All the way!! “Eye zu” !!!
Emmanuel R. A. Osae
PRO – NDC (United Kingdom & Ireland)