Ghana is to participate in the 59th session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW59) slated for March 9th to 20th at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.
Representatives of member states, UN entities, and Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and accredited non-governmental organisations from all regions of the world will attend the session.
Speaking to the Ghana News Agency in an interview, Nana Oye Lithur, Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection explained that the main focus of the session would be on the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action.
Nana Oye Lithur, who is leading Ghana’s delegation, said the session would also focus on the current challenges that affect its implementation and the achievement of gender equality and the empowerment of women.
The Ghanaian delegation would include women’s rights activists; gender experts, government representatives, as well as representatives from gender based civil society organizations, and traditional leaders.
Nana Oye Lithur noted that Ghana would take advantage of the platform to showcase the nation’s gender mainstreaming policies, organize side events to share “our progressive success story,” hold high-level discussions with governmental and non-governmental organizations alongside the conference.
The Gender Minister, who is the President of the newly composed Bureau of Ministers of Social Development for ECOWAS said: “We will not achieve gender justice unless we challenge gender stereotyping”.
She explained that real and sustained change was unlikely without a concerted effort on the part of all progressive social justice movements to leverage gender transformation in practice and in advocacy positions.
The Gender Minister said gender equality was not only a basic human right, but that its achievement also had enormous socio-economic ramifications since empowering women fueled thriving economies, spurred productivity and growth.
Nana Oye Lithur said the Commission would therefore undertake a review of progress made in the implementation of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, 20 years after its adoption at the fourth World conference on Women in 1995.
The review (Beijing+20) will also include the outcomes of the 23 special session of the General Assembly, the first five-year assessment conducted after the adoption of the Platform for Action, which highlighted further actions and initiatives.
The Gender Minister said the session would also address opportunities for achieving gender equality and the empowerment of women in the post-2015 development agenda.
Nana Oye Lithur noted that the CSW was the principal global intergovernmental body exclusively dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women was established by Council Resolution 11 (II) of June 21, 1946.
She said CSW since its establishment, has served as an instrument in promoting women’s rights, documenting the reality of women’s lives throughout the world, and shaping global standards on gender equality and the empowerment of women.
In 1996, ECOSOC, in resolution 1996 expanded the Commission’s mandate and decided that it should take a leading role in monitoring and reviewing progress and problems in the implementation of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, and in mainstreaming a gender perspective in UN activities.