On International Women’s Day, Stakeholders Advocate for the Approval of the Affirmative Action Bill

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As the world commemorates International Women’s Day under the theme “Invest in women, Accelerate Progress,” Becky Enyonam Ahadzi, the Coordinator for the Affirmative Action Bill Coalition, has joined the chorus advocating for the swift passage of the Affirmative Action Bill.

She emphasized that this legislative action would signify Ghana’s dedication to enhancing gender equality within the country. Ahadzi reiterated her call for the urgent enactment of the bill while speaking to Citi News during the Intergenerational Dialogue/Youth Forum on the Passage of the Affirmative Action Bill held in Accra.

“As we celebrate International Women’s Day, we believe that the passage of the affirmative action and gender equality bill is one of the ways the country will show its commitment to investing in women and it will show that we are progressively increasing our political life.

“What this bill is going to do is to ensure we have at least 30% representation of women in key decision-making spaces in this country and so we are calling on parliament, both majority and minority to come to a consensus and pass this bill for the better of women in this nation”.

Enyonam Ahadzi also asserted that “because we are in an election year, it will be expedient to increase advocacy efforts to ensure the Bill is passed by Parliament before the end of March 2024”.

The Affirmative Action (Gender Equality) Bill was introduced to parliament in 2016 with the aim of addressing the evident marginalization of women in critical decision-making spheres in Ghana. Once passed into law, the bill will mandate the reservation of at least 40% of public offices for women.

Over the years, Ghana has struggled with the underrepresentation of women and other marginalized groups in leadership roles, both locally and nationally. The country has fallen short of the 30% UN target for women’s participation, reflecting a concerning trend.

Article 17, clause 4 of the 1992 constitution of Ghana empowers Parliament to enact laws in instances where there is clear historical evidence of gender discrimination. This provision underscores the urgent need for stakeholders to urge the government to ensure the passage of the Affirmative Action Bill. Doing so would help bridge the gender gap in the country and accelerate progress through the inclusive and active involvement of women in decision-making processes.

The Intergenerational Dialogue/Youth Forum on the Passage of the Affirmative Action Bill, organized in collaboration with the Affirmative Action Bill Coalition, Women in Law and Development in Africa (WiLDAF), Network for Women’s Rights in Ghana (NETRIGHT), Women’s Voice Leadership Project at Plan International Ghana, and supported by Global Affairs Canada, underscores the collective effort to advocate for gender equality and women’s empowerment in Ghana.

Source: Citi online

 

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