Intensify advocacy for passage of Affirmative Action bill

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

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