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25.11.2005 General News

Coalition sad about delay in passing conventions

By GNA
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Accra, Nov. 25, GNA - The National Coalition on Domestic Violence Legislation in Ghana on Friday said it was saddened by the impotence displayed by the Government to fully translate into national policy the numerous international conventions and declarations that recognized gender-based violence as human rights issues.

It cited the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, which the coalition said, provided a comprehensive framework for addressing gender-based violence as one of such conventions.

"The absence of a legislative framework to combat the problem is indicative of government's lack of seriousness to acts of violence against women and girls."

This was contained in a statement issued in Accra and signed by Mr Adolf Awuku Bekoe, National Coordinator, to commemorate this year's 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence and International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women from November 25 to December 10.

This year's global theme is: "For the Health of Women, For the Health of the World: No More Violence."

Mr Bekoe said gender-based violence was a serious developmental and public health issue that required public policy debate and the need for governments to commit financial resources and collaborate with non-governmental organisations to work together to change hearts and minds, reform laws and build support services for victims. "Gender-based violence is far from just being women issues left solely to women's NGOs to tackle. It is an incontrovertible fact that gender-based violence jeopardizes women's lives, bodies, psychological integrity and freedom, and that of their dependants," he said. He said the coalition since its inception in 2003, had worked assiduously to popularise and mobilise support for the passage of the Domestic Violence Bill into law. "What is left is for government to do its part."

A number of women were seen at major roads intersections in Accra on Friday dressed in white and with plaster on their faces and holding placards some which read: "Stop Violence Against Women".

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