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06.08.2009 Politics

Assembly women in Upper East strategize for 2010 District elections

By GNA
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Bolgatanga, Aug. 6, GNA - The Upper East Regional Assembly Women Caucus (UERAWOC), has started strategizing on how to get more representation in the upcoming District Assembly Election in 2010.

As part of the strategies, the UERAWOC on Wednesday held a stakeholders meeting to deliberate on strategic plans towards the impending election.

The Regional Inter-sectoral Gender Network (RISEGNET), an NGO in the Region, is providing capacity building for the Assembly women and other women who want to stand, with funding and support from Action Aid Ghana (AAG).

They are to be provided with capacity building in the areas of campaign strategies, confident building, public speaking, and advocacy skills and how to break socio-cultural barriers hindering women from participating in politics.

Speaking at the programme, the Regional Chairman of RISEGNET, Mr Daud James Abang-Gos advised the Caucus that, in their quest to advocate for equality and opportunities for women in governance and leadership, they should not antagonize their male counterparts.

Mr Abang -Gos advised the women not to identify men as their problem but rather identify systems and structures which worked against their progress and called on their male counterparts to support in dismantling the bad structures.

“The moment you send signals that men are your problem, then you are indirectly organizing them to resist your moves and that would work against your efforts for development”, he emphasized.

He also urged them to advise their fellow women who perpetuate injustices to their colleagues and children to desist from that and asked them to start thinking of exploring other alternative means of sourcing for funds to run programmes

He said in past elections, his outfit, with support from AAG, had organized capacity building for women, including, Ensuring gender parity in local governance, Advocacy training for Assembly women, collecting data from Districts on Assembly women and the formation of the Assembly Women Caucus, among others,

Mr Abang -Gos said such capacity building workshops had yielded positive results as many women through it had became Assembly women, especially during the last Assembly election.

The Programme Officer of AAG, Mr Gregory Dery, who took the participants through Strategic Planning, lamented that despite the fact that women formed the majority of the population, they were not fully represented at the Assembly level.

He said one of the areas AAG was focusing on was to help address issues affecting the vulnerable and that of poverty and that the AAG was supporting the Assembly women caucus to enable more women to be represented at the Assembly levels and other public sectors to empower them to contribute to issues affecting them.

He noted that, among the nine District Chief Executives in the region, only one is a female and that no woman had also been a Coordinator at the Regional or District Coordinating Councils.

The President of the UERAWOC, Ms Helen Vorodam thanked AAG for the support and indicated that some of them were able to contest and win the last Assembly election as a result of the support and capacity building they got from AAG.

She noted that the main objective of the Caucus was to ensure that women were adequately represented in political decision making at all levels, advocate for adequate resources to address gender issues, encourage the education of the girl-child and to lobby for the enforcement of laws.

Ms Vorodam said she would work hard to encourage and support more women to stand in the 2010 District election to ensure that women get a fair representation to champion their cause.

GNA

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