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Dr Alidu urges parties to give women sensitive positions

BY: Albert K. Salia
Dr Seidu Alidu
Dr Seidu Alidu

A political Science lecturer at the University of Ghana, Legon, Dr Seidu Alidu, has urged political parties to take deliberate steps to give sensitive positions in the parties to women.

“It should not just be the usual positions reserved for women such as Women’s Organiser or Head of Women’s Desk,” he stated, stressing that “I think what we need to do is to walk the talk of bridging equity and greater women’s participation in politics.”

He said the political parties could start with filing and election of polling station executives and electoral co-ordinators, which would be extended to the constituency, regional and national levels.

Dr Alidu was sharing his thoughts on how women participation in politics and governance could be improved as the country celebrated International Women’s Day (IWD) last Tuesday,

Strategic agenda

He said the parties should make it a part of their strategic agenda to encourage women by reducing the filing fees for them to enable them to file and contest or even make them pick those forms for free.

That agenda, he said, should also encourage the women to contest for strategic positions in the political parties not just those that have women in them such as women’s organiser or women’s desk.

“When we start this affirmative action from the basic grassroots of our politics, then you tend to see it ballooning to the national level,” he said.

At the governmental level, Dr Alidu said the winning party should also appoint more women into very strategic positions of governance apart from positions reserved for women such as Minister of Gender, Women and Social Protection.

“If we do not take that deliberate policy and measures to empower women, our traditional cultural system is designed in such a way that women are either marginalised or are vehemently fought when they put up themselves for such positions of prestige,” he stated.

Dr Alidu said to be able to move beyond gender and cultural biases, “we need to take a deliberate affirmative action by governments, policy makers to make sure that an enough enabling environment is created for women to be willing and able to contest in all circumstances.”

He, therefore, challenged all stakeholders to create the enabling environment politically for women to occupy positions of influence and positions of strategic interest for national development.

“But when you look at equal opportunities, and responsibility opportunities in government and in other sectors of the economy, women tend to lag behind relative to men notwithstanding the fact that they have higher numbers,” he stated.