The Convener for the Affirmative Action (AA) Bill, Mrs Sheila Minkah-Premo, has advocated the urgent need for the passage of the Affirmative Action Bill into law.
She said: “the processes of the bill which has been in existence for the past 11 years when passed into law, will address gender inequality at all levels and promote decision-making in the country.”
The convener made the call at a day’s training for members of the Affirmative Action (AA) Bill Coalition, on the theme: “Strategic Engagement with members of the AA Bill Coalition on the immediate passage of Ghana’s Affirmative Action Bill.”
It was aimed at sensitising the participants to the need for an Affirmative Action law in Ghana to provide support for them to increase their advocacy towards passing Ghana’s Affirmative Action Bill into law.
It was also intended to train members on the content of the Bill and to develop approaches on getting the Bill to Parliament and ensure its passage into law.
The event was organised by ABANTU for Development with support from the African Women’s Development Fund and attended by the civil society and women group organisations.
Mrs Minkah-Premo stated that the Bill, which was currently before Cabinet, should be sent to Parliament for its passage into bill.
She appealed to Cabinet to approve the bill for the Ministry of Gender Children and Social Protection to lay it before Parliament for its passage.
The convener said the continuous neglect of the bill, would not help in promoting equality, ensuring balanced decision making and progress of the country.
The convener for the Women’s Manifesto Coalition, MrsHamida Harrison,said the bill had not been passed into law though its demand was supported by the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women(CEDAW), Beijing Platform for Action and other African Union and Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), among others.
Mrs Harrison expressed worry over the processes leading to the passage of the bill, and called on the government have a political will and ensure the passage of the bill into law, to help promote equity at all levels.
Mrs Harrison stressed the need for the involvement of men in ensuring the passage of the bill to help in decision making.
She stated that countries that had the AA law were progressing, and urged the participants to be ambassadors in sensitising the public to the need to pass bill into law.
Mrs Harrison stated that Ghana was likely to miss most of the Sustainable Development Goals if the country failed to pass the bill into law.
She advocated the need for civil society organisations and women groups to put in place new strategies, including media advocacy toward the passage of the bill into law.
BY ANITA NYARKO-YIRENKYI