Right from the very day Mrs. Charlotte Osei was nominated and appointed as Electoral Commissioner of this country, she suffered all manner of verbal attacks from some quarters. The vitriol launched against her finally worked in the favour of those who wanted to get rid of her.
The matter ended in the Supreme Court and the rest, as they say, is history.
Today, she has been appointed the UN International Electoral Commissioner for an upcoming election in Afghanistan after the ECOWAS job as Deputy Head of the ECOWAS pre-election mission to Nigeria. By Jove! This is a great position. So, did she get this position through sexual favours? Where are the wagging tongues who said that she was incompetent? So, was it only a matter of putting up a charade to get rid of her?
As great a position as this is, it shows that the international community have found Mrs. Charlotte Osei very competent and as a result gives her one great position after the other. Now it is evident that Mrs. Charlotte Osei was not incompetent as we were made to believe. It is great that those who saw the writing on the wall took the matter up to the Supreme Court. Although the effort of challenging her removal was unsuccessful, it showed that there were some people who saw some mischief at play and were determined to ensure that this was corrected.
In all of this what can we learn? One, it is important that we as a people stop the politics of vindictiveness. The politics of vindictiveness does nothing but robs the country of competent men and women who have what it takes to cause positive change in our institutions. Overcoming the politics of vindictiveness will inure to the benefit of the growth of state institutions. It is true that we need strong institutions; however, we need men and women of calibre and integrity to be the catalyst for strengthening our institutions.
Again, it is important that women in this country begin to stand against any form of false allegations against fellow women who are given tough positions in this country. It is so unfair that as a result of differences in political parties, women will join the bandwagon of unleashing verbal attacks on the personality of women who have risen to the top by dint of hard work. When it has to do with gender equality and women empowerment, solidarity among women should be the ultimate goal no matter which political party one belongs to.
While it is important that women show solidarity towards their fellow women no matter their political differences, the media should also begin a campaign against any unfair comment or remark against any woman. This will help to give women the understanding that they have the support of society in spite of all the vitriolic attacks that are hurled at them. Furthermore, it will encourage more women to begin to enter spaces of leadership that are deemed to be tough.
We should be seen as promoting gender equality and women empowerment in all aspects of our lives. The issue of gender equality and women empowerment is something we should promote and not pay lip service to at conferences. It should be part of us, right from the home to the public spaces. For if women are supported and empowered, our world will be a better place for all.
The above stance does not mean that one does not have the right to bring a case against a woman in a leadership position when there is a genuine reason to do so.
Mrs. Charlotte Osei suffered vindictiveness; she has been vindicated now. Let the rest of the world know here and now that Mrs. Charlotte Osei is as competent as the word and that we as a country have missed an opportunity to benefit from her skills and competencies. Our institutions need to be strong; these institutions need men and women who are strong in character and principled in the matter of strengthening these institutions.
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