VARIOUS activities were held yesterday to mark this year’s international women’s day.
In Accra the Programmes Manager in charge of Governance at Women in Law and Development in Africa,(WiLDAF), Mr Frank Bodza, urged stakeholders to advocate gender parity of women in the agricultural sector, reports Anita Nyarko-Yirenkyi
According to Mr Bodza women in that sector produce 70 per cent of the agricultural produce, which help in promoting the Gross Domestic Product of the country.
He said this during an interaction with women farmers at the Ga West Municipal Assembly in Accra yesterday, to commemorate this year’s International Women’s Day which aims to inspire women across the world.
The programme was organised by WiLDAF in collaboration with OXFAM, an international non- governmental organisation.
Mr Bodza called for the need to ensure the contribution of women at all levels to help in the decision making process.
He said some factors that affect women in agriculture were access to land, labour and capital.
“The gender gap needs to be closed to ensure effective development at all levels”, he added.
The Municipal Development Officer in charge of women in agriculture, Ms Gifty Bobuafor, urged the women to get involved in active association to help them in their activities.
Ms Patricia Essel, Programmes Manager of WiLDAF stated that the challenges that face women peasant farmers included lack of access to land, credit, equipment and services of extension officers.
“They also lack education which affect them in their operations”, she added.
A female farmer who does not want to be named called on government to make roads leading to farms accessible to ensure that food products were sent to markets on time.
Linda Naa Deide Aryeetey reported that women (traders) at the Kaneshie market were yesterday lauded for selling food stuffs under hygienic conditions at a ceremony held in Accra to mark the International Women’s Day (IWD).
The event, which was on the theme “Safeguarding the future of the market woman in our changing markets” schooled the market women on the causes, modes of transmission, and preventive measures of diseases such as cholera, malaria and meningitis.
Madam Harriet Anita Abaidoo, a Community Development Activist, and organiser of the event, said the event was necessitated by the need to create awareness for the IWD celebration and empower market women to be clean advocates.
She said curbing cholera starts from the markets since the markets are the main sources for the distributions of food stuffs.
Madam Emily Nortey, a medical officer at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital (KBTH) who educated the market women on meningitis asked them to practise regular hand washing, and use their handkerchiefs when sneezing or coughing.
She encouraged them to avoid crowded areas and eat healthy foods to boost their immunity and stay strong.
Mr. Obeng Yeboah, Kaneshie District Environmental Officer, tasked the market women to ensure that the market was always kept clean to avert the spread of dangerous diseases.
He encouraged them to hold waste collectors responsible and collaborate with them to ensure that rubbish containers were emptied regularly.
The International Women’s Day celebration presents a time to reflect on progress made, to call for change in how women are treated.
This year’s celebration is meant to celebrate acts of courage and determination by ordinary women who have played an extraordinary role in the history of their countries and communities.
The theme for this year’s International Women’s Day is “Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step It Up for Gender Equality”, and consider how to accelerate momentum for the effective implementation of the new polices in favour of women.
This year’s celebration stressed the need for all to join in achieving the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) four and five thus to ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning and achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.
By Anita Nyarko-Yirenkyi