Women organisers of the various political parties in the country have welcomed the idea of increasing women’s participation and representation by pledging their support for the Affirmative Action Bill.
The Affirmative Action Bill, which was launched about last week, is aimed at increasing women’s participation and representation in Ghana.
The women organisers called for a reserved quota in the newly-created constituencies in the country.
They noted that with the vital role played by women, an increase in women’s participation in politics will be crucial in the socio-economic development of the country.
During an event organised by the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) under its political parties programme themed: “Affirmative Action as a Means of Increasing Women’s Participation and Representation in Politics: The Role of Political Parties in Ghana,” the women organisers highlighted their parties programmes and plans.
Otiko Afisah Djaba, New Patriotic Party (NPP) Women’s Organiser, in her presentation, noted that based on the party’s manifesto to increase the participation of women in politics, former President Kufour established the Ministry of Women and Children’s Affairs to give women a voice in politics.
“We also established the women’s fund so women will have easy access to financial support without having to compromise their dignity.”
The NPP Women’s Organiser also noted that it was during the tenure of the Kufour administration that Parliament recorded its highest number of women representatives, with NPP having 13 women in Parliament.
She however noted that NPP is ready to back the quota system once there is a binding constitutional provision for all parties in the country.
Gifty Addo, who represented Hajia Hajara Musah of the People’s National Convention (PNC), reiterated efforts by the party to increase women’s participation in politics.
She said, “The PNC has twice elected a female as a running mate for the county’s general elections.”
Explaining further, she noted that the PNC has gone a step further to pay campaign bills for women contesting parliamentary seats in the party, adding, “PNC agrees that all new district constituencies should be allocated to women.”
Mary Ankomah Boakye-Boateng of the Convention People’s Party (CPP) noted that the party has elected a female chairperson, noting, “She is also assisted by two women deputies so when it comes to women representation CPP has taken the first step.
“We must tackle the issue from childhood and change their negative perception of entering into politics.
The National Democratic Congress (NDC) Women’s organiser, Anita Desooso called for a reserved quota for women, saying the ruling NDC party is putting measures in place to ensure the achievement of 40 per cent women participation in politics as stated in the NDC’s manifesto.
“We currently have 13 women occupying ministerial and regional positions in the country,” she noted.
She also called for collaboration between women’s groups in order to encourage women to participate effectively in polities.