Despite United Nations Revitalized Peace Agreement on 35% representation for women in governance both at state and national levels, women in Sub-Saharan Africa are still lagging behind.
No wonder this sensitisation campaign on proportional representation of women in politics, scaling up political partnership between men and women, which brought together a diverse group of stakeholders is holding in Freetown, Sierra Leone to deliberate and strategize on how to further raise the voices of women in the political space
The meeting, occasioned by the marginalization of women in political representation, in different regions of Africa in spite of their varying degrees, is described as a chronic phenomenon
The level of women participation in decision-making and representation as members of national parliaments is uninspiring and debilitating when compared to their men counterparts and this remains an enduring and pervasive experience even in the 21st century, to the extent that political decision-making in some countries in West African sub-region is stereotypically assigned to men.
The symposium by the ECOWAS Female Parliamentarians Association (ECOFEPA) is aimed at unleashing the potentials of women in politics.
ACCORDING TO THE WOMEN CAUCUS LEADER OF SIERRA LEONE AND A MEMBER OF ECOFEPA, HON. VERONICA KADIA SESAY, WHO IN HER OPENING SPEECH, DECRIED THE LOW REPRESENTATION OF WOMEN IN ELECTED OFFICES CALLED ON GOVERNMENTS OF WEST AFRICAN NATIONS TO SPEED UP ACTIONS TO FULLY IMPLEMENT THE 30% AFFIRMATIVE ACTION FOR WOMEN’S POLITICAL REPRESENTATION.
A representative of the Sierra Leone’s electoral commission, Marian Sia Mojjueh, explained the formula of women’s political representation as implemented by president Julius Madda-Bio.
For the United Nation’s country representative, Pa Lamin Beyai, United Nation’s stance on the full implementation of the 35 percent agreement is unchanging
In his goodwill message, Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament, Sidie Mohamed Tunis, recalled that ECOFEPA since inception, has been committed to defending “the cause of effective participation of women in the political process with the aim of increasing their number in high-level positions”.
He restated the commitment of ECOWAS Parliament to ensuring that women are represented in the sub region.
Present at the opening ceremony of this symposium, included Sierra Leone’s Acting Minister of gender and children affairs, and EU country representative among others all speaking on enhancing gender parity and women’s political representation in West Africa