Gender Minister urges Parliament to expedite passage of Affirmative Action Bill

Dakoa Newman

The Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Madam Dakoa Newman, has appealed to Parliament to expedite the passage of the Affirmative Action Bill.

She underscored the importance of enacting the bill into law, which would ensure greater representation and participation of women in decision-making processes across various sectors.

Madam Dakoa Newman, the Member of Parliament for Okaikwei South, made the call when speaking on the floor of Parliament in Accra, on Wednesday, June 19.

She emphasised that the bill was crucial for advancing gender equality and empowering women in Ghana.

The Minister, in her address, noted that gender disparities still existed in the country, particularly in political and corporate leadership circles, adding that, despite women’s contributions to national development, their presence in leadership roles remained disproportionately low.

Therefore, the bill was designed to rectify the imbalances by mandating minimum quotas for women’s representation in key areas in order to foster a more inclusive and equitable society, she stated.

The Okaikwei South legislator also touched on the broader implications of passing the bill, noting that increased female representation in leadership positions could lead to more comprehensive and effective policies.

“Women bring unique perspectives and experiences that are essential for addressing issues such as healthcare, education, and social welfare. By ensuring that women have a voice in these critical areas, the bill would contribute to more holistic and responsive governance,” she emphasised.

She called on all key stakeholders, including Members of Parliament, civil society organisations (CSOs) and the public to support the passage of the bill into law.

She urged lawmakers to prioritise the bill in their legislative agenda and recognize its importance for the nation’s development.

Madam Newman also appealed to advocacy groups to continue their efforts in raising awareness about the bill and its potential impact on gender equality in Ghana.

“The passage of the Affirmative Action Bill reflects a commitment to advancing gender equality and empowering women in Ghana.

“Today, at our premier institution, the University of Ghana, the Chancellor, the Chairperson of the University Council, the Vice Chancellor, and the Registrar are all women, leading the university to greater heights,” she stated.

“Mr. Speaker, despite these successes, women remain under-represented in governance. The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) enjoins us to adopt temporary special measures to accelerate gender equality. Passing the Bill will not only promote gender equality and women empowerment, but also fulfil our international commitments,” she added.

The legislator said the major political parties, the New Patriotic Party and the National Democratic Congress had unequivocally committed towards the passage of the transformative bill, noting that the bipartisan support underscored its significance and the urgency for action.

Source: GNA

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