Exclusion of women in peacebuilding threat to devt— Peace Council

BY: Prince Acquah
Mr George Amoh — Executive Secretary, NPC
Mr George Amoh — Executive Secretary, NPC

The Executive Secretary of the National Peace Council (NPC), Mr George Amoh, has stated that the exclusion of women in peace building and security issues pose a major threat to attaining peace and development.

He observed that Ghana was characterised by numerous threats, including political and religious, albeit covert, which could not be resolved without the active involvement of women giving their high level of influence, particularly, on men.

"From the figures I have seen in the last census, you are about half a million more than the men in this country. So, it means that if this country wants to succeed in providing interventions that will make this country more peaceful than it is, then we cannot leave our women out. That'll be very disastrous, it will be unhealthy and this country will lose," he said.

Mr Amoh made the remarks at the launch of a women peace and security project by the Foundation for Security and Development in Africa (FOSDA) in Accra.

The project, funded by the Canadian High Commission in Ghana, seeks to build the technical capacity of 35 women in participating in peace building processes at the national and international levels.

The training is on the theme: "Achieving gender balance in peace and security for more equal and equitable Ghana."


Mr Amoh urged women to utilise their influence positively to change the way conflicts were handled in the country.

He also campaigned for an increased participation of women in advocacy to promote the culture of tolerance and non-violence in Ghana.

"We are doing a lot and I think if women will take up the challenge and complement the efforts of men who are already in the field, we are going to go farther than we are today," he stated.

Mr Amoh also made a strong case for the empowerment of the girl child and to let them believe that they were also worthy partners in bringing peace to our world.

"Let us encourage more women to go into our security agencies and into politics," he said.

Affirmative Action

The Acting Executive Director of FOSDA, Ms Theodora Williams Anti, called on the government, Parliament and all stakeholders to expedite action in passing the Affirmative Action Bill.

That, she argued, would increase the representation and participation of women in decision making, especially at all levels of peace and security.

"And so we call on Parliament, we call on government and we call on all of us women to put our voices strongly behind the bill and get it passed as soon as possible," Ms Anti intimated.

Gender mainstreaming

Launching the project, the Principal Programme Officer at the Department of Gender, Ministry of Gender Children and Social protection, Ms Vera Karikari, called for the principles of equality, non-discrimination and fair distribution of benefits of development to be the focus to enhance peace and security.

"As to how we can achieve gender balance in peace and security for a more equal and equitable Ghana, concerted efforts are needed from all stakeholders in order to implement to the core the Ghana National Action Plan 2," she said.