Intensify advocacy for passage of Affirmative Action bill
Participants at the event
The Convener of the Affirmative Action Bill (AAB) Coalition, Madam Sheila Minkah-Premo, has charged gender rights advocates to intensify the advocacy for the swift passage of the Affirmative Action Bill.
The lawyer, at the Regional Consultative Forum in Accra, which served as a platform to garner commitments from key stakeholders for the smooth passage of the bill, pointed to the need for the intensification of advocacy efforts by stakeholders at all levels.
She said the bill, presented to Parliament since 31st October 2023, had gone through the first reading and was currently under a certificate of urgency hence, more commitment was needed from women’s rights organisations and other stakeholders to justify its passage. “This is the time advocates need to intensify advocacy, come together and write a strong worded letter to parliament justifying the urgency to pass the bill into law,” she said.
The consultative forum on the passage of the Affirmative Action Bill, was sponsored by the Government of Canada and five other Gender rights groups namely, the Network for Women’s Rights in Ghana (NETRIGHT), Women in Law and Development in Africa (WiLDAF) Ghana, Affirmative Action Bill Coalition, Plan International and Women’s Voice and Leadership in Ghana.
The Chairperson, Madam Afua Brown Eyeson, National Executive Committee, WiLDAF Ghana, said her organisation, together with other organisations were working to strengthen the political will to pass the AA Bill into law.
The bill, she said, would help provide accountability framework to measure gender equality, empowerment of women among other things by the Executive, Judiciary, the public and private sector.
It will also give a boost to women’s quest for adequate representation on all levels of decision making as stipulated in the Maputo Protocol of 2003, Beijing Platform for Action and other AU and ECOWAS Protocols on Gender Equality ratified by Ghana.
The National Director of the Department of Gender at the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection (MGCSP), Madam Faustina Acheampong, said the Ministry would collaborate with all the stakeholders to facilitate the swift passage of the bill.
Gender Advocates say that the Affirmative Action Bill, a proposed law, if passed, will legally address a history of systematic discrimination, stereotypes, traditions, religious dogmas and practices that impede the socio-economic, socio-cultural rights and freedoms of women and girls.-—GNA