Kumasi, Oct. 28, GNA - The media have been urged to highlight positively women parliamentary aspirants for this year's elections. Mr John Kwadwo Owusu, Chairman of the Ashanti Regional Network of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs), gave the advice at a day's workshop on the affirmative action on women participation in Election 2004, organised for 25 media personnel, women parliamentary aspirants and other workers from selected Government institutions.
The workshop jointly organised by the Ashanti Regional Network of NGOs and Ibis Ghana, a Danish NGO, was aimed at sharing ideas as to how to promote the women aspirants through the media devoid of political differences.
He noted that women occupied important positions in the society and that there was the need for the media to give them equal opportunity as male parliamentary candidates to enable them to present their manifestoes to the electorate.
Mr Owusu explained that the election of women to Parliament would further deepen the country's democracy, ensure tolerance and peace in the country.
He stressed the need to promote social, political and economic progress.
Mrs Aba Oppong, Manager of the Reproductive Health Unit of the Centre of the Development of the People (CEDEP), speaking on: "Gender and Politics", noted that for many years women had been relegated to the background, due to some negative cultural practices.
She said as a result, there were less than 10 per cent of women in Parliament and this had, therefore, brought about the urgent need for them to participate actively in politics.
Miss Barbara Seiwaa Asamoah, National Democratic Congress (NDC) Parliamentary Candidate for Offinso South, said she was not happy about how she was portrayed negatively a few months ago by a section of the media.
She, therefore, made a passionate appeal to the media to project aspiring women parliamentarians to prepare them adequately for the elections.
During an open forum, the media expressed willingness to help the aspiring women parliamentarians but appealed to them to furnish the media with their programme of activities to enable the media to give them fair coverage.
The participants urged the Ashanti Regional Network of NGOs to meet programme officers and managers of radio FM stations to discuss and arrange with them to give the women parliamentary candidates some air time to present their manifestoes to the people.