The Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection has organised the first ever Ghana Women’s Summit, in Accra, to celebrate the achievements of Ghanaian women, draw inspiration from others, and speak about their challenges.
The summit, held at the Banquet Hall of the State House in Accra, attracted women from across the professions, women in executive positions on retirement, traditional rulers and Ministers of State and market women.
There were also women Heads of State, and private institutions at the celebration, with the theme: “Equality for Women is Progress for All Through Total Inclusion.”
The summit was a prelude to celebrate the role of Ghanaian women towards the nation’s independence on March 6, as well as to the United Nations International Women’s Day, which falls on March 8.
Dr Rabiatu Deinyo Armah, Member of the Council of State, who represented President John Dramani Mahama, expressed Government’s concern about wealth disparity, and reiterated the commitment of government to bridge the gap between the richest and the poorest of Ghanaians.
She said government would also ensure an all-inclusive society where the disadvantaged have a stake in the development process and progress.
“This means creating equal opportunities for both men and women to have holistic national development.
“It is for this reason that Government has created the gender machinery and tasked it to ensure gender equality for total development,” Dr Armah, said.
Dr Armah paid glowing tribute to Ghanaian women who had made significant contributions to the economic, political and social progress of the nation, and the “many changes in education, business, science and technology, the arts and industry, sports agriculture, commerce and social development that have resulted in the efforts of women”.
Dr Armah, who is also a Muslim Cleric, gave the assurance that government would continue to honour its obligation to Ghanaian women, by supporting the Gender Ministry as evident in the tripling of its budgetary allocation for 2014.
“As we join the Gender Ministry, our mothers, sisters, wives, and daughters at this historic Summit to mark International Women’s Day, a day set aside to celebrate the achievement of women and advocate for their empowerment and equality across the world, let us move forward as a nation well-endowed to impact the world,” Dr Armah said.
Nana Oye Lithur, the Minister for Gender, Children and Social Protection said the footprints of distinguished Ghanaian women have reflected the resources they have marshal in solidarity, strength, and binding hopes to keep dreams alive for a transformational change in Ghana.
She praised Ghanaian women for steadily breaking up the pink glass ceilings to achieve success for the growth of the country.
Nana Oye Lithur made a roll of distinguished Ghanaian women as Mabel Dove Danquah, Justice Annie Ruth Jiagge, Mrs Akua Asabea, Mrs Hannah Cudjoe, Mrs Mary Koranteng, Mrs Susana Alhassan, Mrs Regina Asamany, Mrs Grace Ayensu, Mrs Christiana Wilmot, Mrs Comfort Asomoah, and Mrs Lucy Anim.
The Gender Minister noted that for the first time traditional sector queen mothers have been admitted to the National and Regional House of Chiefs.
She stressed the need to continue and sustain the efforts to ensure gender equality for women to become an integral part of national development free from gender based violence and harmful traditional practices.
Nana Oye Lithur gave the assurance that the Government would continue to create an enabling environment to honour its national commitment and international obligation towards women.
Accordingly, the Ministry has spearheaded the drafting of an affirmative action bill to be laid before parliament, co-sponsoring of the intestate succession bill and property rights of spouse’s bill, regulations on human trafficking and domestic violence, review of the disability Act and campaign against gender based violence all in recognition of the safety of women.
Mrs Affenyi-Dadzie, a former Member of the Council of State, said the participation of the male counterparts during the celebration makes a strong statement to the effect that there is the need to develop together for a holistic and sustainable nation building