Gambia: Gov’t committed to Wipe out All Negative Activities Causing Inequity
July 16, 2019 | 0 Comments
By: Bakary Ceesay
Mai Ahmad Fatty, presidential advisor on governance and policy has said President Barrow-led administration is committed to wiping out all negative activities causing inequity, unequal and injustice in the country as well as creating an enabling environment for everyone in the security sector.
Fatty, former Interior minister was speaking during the Security Sector Reform (SSR) graduation of 43 security and women bureau officials on gender mainstreaming at a local hotel in Banjul on Friday.
“For those of you in the arm and security services you must not only notionally view the opposite gender as just women. But you must accord them the professional respect, required discipline and grant them the reward they deserve for their competency includes equal pay for equal contribution and participation,” he said.
He added that: “We are equal and we all Gambian citizen. We have equal entitlement and trainings; therefore, the respect must be exhibited in order to impose yourselves (women) on what you deserve within security sector,”
“The way we (men) perceive our women folk, the transformation must be realized through implementation and not just ordinary policy statement. It must be reflected in your (service men) attitude particularly those of you in command positions,” he stated.
“We must see professional women and girls. They also ought to deserve equal among of respect as citizens because this is not only a policy matter but a fundamental human rights issue,” he stated.
Fatty a professional lawyer further said the gender imbalance in the security must now be corrected, adding the training the security personnel obtain would empower them to correct the gender imbalance in their various security institutions.
“We must also look at the issues of sexual harassment and murder. We must talk about this as a society because these are issues that affect other societies beyond ours as well.”
He called on professional respect for women especially those in the security services, saying women have equal rights with men.
He urged women to contribute immensely in the implementation of the SSR, saying both men and women are equal in the SSR because there is no gender segregation in this reform process.
Niger: African Development Bank President attends historic African Union summit, decries child marriage
July 9, 2019 | 0 Comments
Whilst in Niamey, Adesina also participated in a high-level panel on combatting child marriage, organized on the sidelines of the summit
NIAMEY, Niger, July 8, 2019/ — The president of the African Development Bank (https://www.AfDB.org), Akinwumi Adesina joined continental leaders in Niger for an African Union summit which saw the official launch of the African Continental Free Trade Area agreement – the world’s largest free trade area since the formation of the World Trade Organization.
The agreement, ratified in April, will cover a market of 1.2 billion people and an estimated gross domestic product (GDP) of $2.5 trillion, across all 55 member States of the African Union.
The Bank has been central in shaping the AfCFTA agreement, setting its strategy and format and approving a $4.8 million grant to the AU for the establishing of the Secretariat and to accelerate its roll out. Nigeria made history at the summit by becoming the 54th African country to sign up.
Commending all the parties involved for bringing this historic agreement to fruition, President of Niger, Mahamadou Issoufou said: “The time has come to translate words into actions. The continent has waited for far too long, and we are glad this historic moment for the people of Africa is being witnessed in Niger.”
His comments were echoed by AU President, Abdel Fattah al-Sissi and AU Chairperson, Moussa Faki Mahamat who both stressed the need to celebrate the strides the continent has made.
“An old dream has come true. The founding fathers must be proud,” said Faki.
Child marriage a scourge, women’s inclusion must be prioritized – Adesina
Whilst in Niamey, Adesina also participated in a high-level panel on combatting child marriage, organized on the sidelines of the summit by the First Ladies of West African Economic Community states and Niger’s first lady Dr. Lala Malika Mahamadou Issoufou.
The panel, themed: Combatting child marriage and promoting girls’ education and retention in schools, heard testimonies from young girls as well as from Niger’s traditional chiefs, who committed to support the recommendations of the meeting.
“It is totally unacceptable that in Africa some people would block the future of girls. Fundamentally, we have to protect girls, help them achieve and perform.” Adesina said.
President Issoufou also reaffirmed his government’s commitment to supporting the First ladies.
“Keeping girls in school is one of the best ways to end child marriage. Like men, an educated girl will contribute to her community’s transformation,” the President said.
Rounding off the conversation Niger’s First Lady described the issue as a “critical priority.”
“It is not just a West Africa issue, but an issue for the entire region. So all of us must come together – public, non-governmental institutions, religions leaders, communities, families, and schools – for a sustained multi-stakeholder approach to combat early marriage and promote girls’ education,” Malika Mahamadou Issoufou concluded.
Nigeria: $40 million worth of jewellery, gold iPhone seized from ex-minister
July 5, 2019 | 0 Comments
By Teslim Olawore
A Nigerian court has ordered the imminent seizure of $40 million (£32 million) worth of jewellery and a customised gold iPhone belonging to former oil minister Diezani Alison-Madueke, the country’s anti-graft agency said on Friday.
The items, including hundreds of bangles, rings, earrings, necklaces and watches, were found at a property owned by Alison-Madueke, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) said in a statement.
Alison-Madueke, who ran the petroleum ministry from 2011 to 2015, was charged by the EFCC in absentia with money laundering in 2017. Her whereabouts are unknown, and a London-based lawyer who has represented her did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The order gives the EFCC 14 days to print the charges in any national newspaper and allow for her or “anyone interested in the items” to show why they should not be permanently forfeited to the federal government. In 2017, a court allowed the government to permanently seize a $37.5 million apartment block she owned in an upscale Lagos neighbourhood.
Gambia, Bissau Plays 2nd Draw in International Friendly
June 28, 2019 | 0 Comments
By Bakary Ceesay
Gambia National Women’s Scorpions came from behind to force another 1-1 draw at home to visiting Guinea Bissau Women National Team at the Independence Stadium on Tuesday night following a similar scoreline stalemate in the first encounter 48 hours earlier.
Gambia started up brightly creating numerous chances through Adama Tamba, Penda Bah and Isatou Jallow but were all denied by either poor finishing or the brilliant Fatubinto Mandjan at goal for Bissau.
The visitors punished the wasteful Scorpions with Adama Mane scoring from a close range following a scramble in the Gambian area to send the Bissau bench into wild celebrations as their side took the lead in the 19th minute. The goal seems to have woken up the Queen Scorpions from their early slumber as they responded within 4 minutes with goal poacher Adama Tamba beating Fatubinto Mandjan from 11 yards for the equaliser after she was brought down in the area.
The Gambian team dominated the second half with Captain Penda Bah playing more as an attacker and thus creating chances but the diminutive Fatubinto Mandjan was determined not to be beaten again as her side sets for not a loose and settles for the 1-1 draw.
Speaking to the press after the game, Gambian Coach Mariama Sowe said, she is not satisfied with the results. She however, noted that the performances were good. “I said at the end of the last game that the performance will be different tonight and that is exactly what happened with the girls performing to expectation. The only thing I am not happy with is the result as we created nine chances in the game but the girls were in a hurry to score and only one chance was taken but I take it in good faith,” she said.
Coach Boom urged The Gambia Football Federation (GFF) to maintain the team and organise more test matches to prepare them for future engagements. She further thanked the Federation for the continues development of Women’s Football in the Gambia.
Kigali City interests investors in constructing residential houses
June 28, 2019 | 0 Comments
By Jean d’Amour Mugabo
The City of Kigali, Rwanda’s capital, has encouraged investors to construct residential houses with special focus on availing affordable houses, offering an assurance that the demand is too high.
Speaking at the Kigali Investor’s Forum (KIF) on Tuesday, Kigali City Mayor Marie Chantal Rwakazina pledged the city council’s support to local and foreign investors, saying that there are still many untapped investment opportunities in the city.
KIF aims to promote and encourage private sector involvement in the City’s projects and showcase the role of private sector in accelerating the Kigali City economic development particularly in promoting collective investment, addressing challenges and creating opportunities.
“I would encourage you to invest in constructing affordable houses for sale or rent in order to modernize the city habitation, in developing recreational centres, constructing streets in mapped areas of the city and more,” Ms. Rwakazina told around 400 participants including investors, policy-makers, industrial experts, representatives of financial and academic institutions.
She advised investors to join hands in forming companies and cooperatives for being able to grab these investment opportunities which require a lot of finances. She added that these investments would also be important in creating jobs for the city youth.
Robert Bapfakurera, the Chairman of Rwanda’s Private Sector Federation (PSF) told the media that local investors are mainly challenged with limited access to finance as loan interest rates remain high.
Rwanda established Affordable Housing Fund with $150 million in June 2017 in order to support investors with the finances to use in developing affordable houses. The fund helps investors to acquire loans at 11% interest rate with the repayment period going by 20 years and above while financial institutions in Rwanda usually charge interest at 15% and over within shorter repayment periods.
The Government of Rwanda reports that around 1,000 housing units are developed in the City of Kigali annually while the demand requires 31,000 units. There are currently some ongoing affordable housing projects in Kigali but they are delivering below the demand.
These include the construction of 5,000 housing units which started last year in Ndera Sector of Gasabo District. The project is a joint venture by Development Bank of Rwanda (BRD) and Groupe Palmeraie Développement, one of the Moroccan leaders of Real Estate development and hotel management. The $35 million worth project targets Kigali low-income earners with the lowest monthly income of Rwf200,000 while the cheapest house costs Rwf27 million.
Another project is the construction of 3000 housing units in Nyamirambo Sector of Nyarugenge District by BRD and Remote Estate an American company. The project started in June 2019 and is to be completed in 12 months. The cheapest house in this project will cost the buyer Rwf12 million while the most expensive will cost Rwf35 million.
FIFA WWC: Nchout Ajara’s last gasp effort sends Cameroon into round of 16
June 20, 2019 | 0 Comments
By Boris Esono Nwenfor
The indomitable Lionesses of Cameroon have booked their ticket to the round of 16 of the 2019 edition of the FIFA Women’s World Cup after beating New Zealand in their last group game. The lionesses knew that a win will guarantee that they reach the knock out stage for a second successive world cup, and a brace from inform striker Nchout Ajara made sure that happened.
The striker, who plies her trade in the Norwegian League with Valerenga scored a brace in the second half to beat New Zealand 2b goals to 1, thereby qualifying as one of the third best teams.
Ajara’s goal equally saw her being named as the player of the match.
It was a difficult first half as both teams were even placed as they cancelled each other. The second half was however very productive as both teams went for goals, knowing a victory sends either of them to the round of 16.
Cameroon quickly went ahead through Nchout Ajara at the 57th minute of play with their qualification ticket on the horizon. The team was however left struck and fearing elimination with an own goal from Marie Aurelle Awona at the 80th minute.
Both teams pressed for the winning goal with numerous chances missed by the New Zealnd side as Cameroon’s Ngo Ndom on fine form, keeping out the New Zealand side. At the last kick of the game, it was Cameroon who made sure they are still in the competition as Nchout Ajara scored her second goal of the game to give Cameroon a 2-1 victory.
Cameroon eventually finished third in their group behind Netherlands who topped the group with 9 points, second by Canada with 6 points. Nchout Ajara is the second Cameroon player to score in multiple women’s world cups (2015 and 2019) after teammate Gabrielle Onguene.
Renowned Nollywood Star, Stella Damasus weigh in on Cameroon Crisis, calls for global attention
June 20, 2019 | 0 Comments
By Amos Fofung
Popular Nollywood actress, singer and writer, Stella Damasus, has decried the limited amount of media attention being given to the Anglophone crisis, saying much more has to be done. This was in a series of posts on her official twitter handle.
“I wonder why [the crisis] does not have the kind of media coverage that it deserves,” one of her tweets read.
In another tweet, she said she was not interested in discussing sports when women and children are being killed. “The country (Cameroon) needs help.
Have you seen videos of women and babies being killed? I don’t understand how this is okay,” she said.
“I feel that social media can sometimes do a better job than mainstream media,” she added in yet another tweet.
She went on to add a Help Cameroon hash tag on her messages that went viral moments after being posted. Several social media users have since been reacting to the celebrity’s messages, with some blaming foreign powers for voluntarily keeping quiet. Stella’s call comes barely weeks after Speaker of the National Assembly Cavaye Yeguie Djibril denounced foreign interference in the country’s internal affairs which he referred to as a “conspiracy.”
“Cameroon has become an object of conspiracy intended to destabilise the country. To justify their interference in internal affairs, the conspirators pretend to denounce it. According to them, the political system in Cameroon is against all dialogue, upholds violence, and refuses to promote human rights,” he had said.
While some foreign powers say it “lacks the will” to solve the conflict in the English-speaking regions of the country, government has always maintained that it is working very hard to restore sustainable peace and security in the two regions.
As part of measures to seek a solution to the crisis, Prime Minister Joseph Dion Ngute visited the troubled regions weeks ago, calling on separatist fighters to drop their arms.
He added that the Head of State is ready to dialogue on any matter except secession and separation because he had sworn before the Cameroonian people to protect the fatherland.
It should be recalled that the armed conflict was ranked among the world’s most neglected crisis by the Norwegian Refugee Council last month. In March, spokesperson for the United Nations High Commission for Refugees, UNHCR, Babar Baloch said the organization needed 184 million US Dollars (about 108 billion FCFA) for Cameroon’s internally displaced persons and Nigeria’s refugees.
Here’s why Cameroonian-born Monique Ntumngia won WWF International Youth Award
June 15, 2019 | 0 Comments
By Amos Fofung
Cameroonian-born Monique Ntumngia founder of ‘Green Girls’ in Cameroon, a social business which educates young women from rural communities in the use of renewable energy, is the recipient of this year’s World Wide Fund for Nature, WWF International President’s Youth award.
The award recognizes young people under the age of 30 helping promote the cause and impact of nature conservation.
As well as her outstanding contribution to promoting sustainable development in the country, the award is recognition of Monique’s efforts to champion the inclusion of women and girls in the renewable energy sector in Cameroon and Africa.
Since its founding in 2015, Green Girls has empowered and trained almost 800 women from 23 communities across Cameroon to generate solar energy and biogas from human waste.
On receiving the award, Monique Said; “It’s been my good fortune that Green Girls has allowed me to combine two of my great passions: sustainable development and female empowerment. Renewable energy is an essential part of any solution if we are to meet both Africa’s future energy needs and the environmental challenges that lie ahead. Today’s youth will be at the forefront of meeting these challenges and women will have a central role to play. Thanks to the tireless work of my team and the boundless enthusiasm of countless young women, we’ve managed to make some significant progress and it’s truly humbling to be recognized for our work”.
Through Green Girls’ work, more than 3,000 households have been provided with biogas, while more than 100 households have had solar installations fitted.
In addition to being trained on how to produce biogas, young women are taught how to promote sustainable development and become financially independent.
In 2017, Monique was also crowned the winner of the inaugural WWF Africa Youth Award.
Monique and these amazing women give us hope and show what is possible.
“Not only is Monique promoting renewable energy that benefits the environment, she is also empowering hundreds of young women across Cameroon…She is a shining light, setting an example and showing us all that development and protecting the environment can go hand in hand,” said Pavan Sukhdev, President of WWF International.
Cameroon Afropop singer Charlotte Dipanda named UNICEF goodwill ambassador
June 15, 2019 | 0 Comments
By Amos Fofung
Charlotte Dipanda, Cameroon’s Afropop singer, reputed for her mostly acoustic music spiced with her lyrics in her native language Bakaka has been named by the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund, UNICEF as one of its goodwill ambassadors.
As a goodwill ambassador, she will assist UNICEF in implementing its mission in over 190 countries and territories to save children’s lives, defend their rights, and to help them fulfil their potential, from early childhood through adolescence.
Charlotte Dipanda joins Samuel Eto’o and Fabrice Ondoa, as UNICEF’s Goodwill Ambassador to Cameroon.
She is the first Cameroonian artiste to become UNICEF’s Goodwill Ambassador in Cameroon.
Announcing her appointment to the Cameroonian public via her social media account, the highly acclaimed vocal singer promised to join UNICEF in its relentlessly fight for children in Cameroon.
“I will work hard to see that UNICEF’s goal to build a world where the rights of every child will be respected is achieved,” she said.
Cameroon Kidnappings: Young Women-Led CSOs/NGO Advocate Peace, Decry Kidnappings of Children, Teachers
November 26, 2018 | 0 Comments
By Boris Esono (Buea-Cameroon)
Some women-led civil society organizations and Non-governmental organizations have called for an end to the present sufferings caused by the ongoing crisis in the North West and South West Regions especially the kidnapping of students and teachers. The statement was made during a Women Coalition for Peace and Development press conference on Saturday November 25 at the Pan African Institute of Development West Africa, PAID-WA.
During the past weeks students, teachers, schools and Universities in Cameroon continue to endure significant violence. On Monday 5th November, 78 students were kidnapped as PSS Nkwen, in Bamenda, North West Region but later released. The school also suffered another separate attack in which 11 students were kidnapped and later released.
The abduction of children during conflict is one of the six grave violations identified and condemned by the UN Security Council. “No grievance or national history justifies the kidnapping, harming and torture of children”, Emilia Miki, Founder/CEO of Denis Miki Foundation and Efeti Ventures said. She also reiterated that Cameroon is the 81st Country to endorse the Safe School Declaration-a declaration which governments pledge to not use schools for military purposes and to protect them during military operations. “….Cameroon’s endorsement of the Safe Schools Declaration signals the government’s commitment to better safeguard learning and mitigates the devastating damaged caused by attacks.”
Some teachers had had properties stolen while others have been verbally abused and according to Emilia Miki, these issues are underreported by the media and given inadequate attention by politicians and activists. She said: “When they (teachers) are killed and kidnapped all they get is shares on social media with comments “RIP”, “God help us” and others. When a journalist is locked up it becomes front page news in every media outlet….. That is solidarity which of course is encouraged. But we shouldn’t as if teachers’ lives don’t matter. Teachers trade unions themselves have gone numb perhaps out of fear for their own lives”.
The members of the coalition have urged both parties of the conflict (separatists, government forces and all those benefiting) to do their utmost to see that places of education are places of safety and also called on the development of initiatives to promote and protect the right to education and continuation in times of conflict.
“The continuation of education can provide life-saving health information as well as advice on specific risk and safety measures in societies facing armed conflict”, said Dopgima Stella, Founder of Center for Youth and Family Empowerment (CEYOFE).
Feka Parchibell Nadum, Founder of Hope for Vulnerables and Orphans and a teacher made a plea to the International communities-especially the UNO, AU, USA, France and UK to unanimously condemn violence against civilians and make clear that no political objective justify tempering with the right to education and abducting of sleeping school children from their beds.
Teachers and school administrators have suffered the most in this crisis. Several teachers have been murdered, maimed and kidnapped in the past weeks as education comes under increasing attack in the English speaking regions of Cameroon. Over 30 schools have been the targets of violence.
“Sophie Mandengue Maloba, a teacher and 42 year-old mother of three died when three armed men riding a motorcycle attacked a school and fired gunshots in Muyuka. An unnamed teacher was killed in similar circumstances three days earlier in Kumba. In the past weeks, armed men have increased their campaigns of violence against school targets notably attacking teachers and school administrators” she added
To Baiye Frida, Founder of Blessing Associates for Women and Children (BAWAC) said “these kidnappings may only be a tip of the iceberg and without swift international action, the crisis will likely worsen”.
They concluded by stating that “people should start talking and denouncing this barbarism meted on teachers or we wait for the next teacher to be a victim who maybe you or me. The violence against teachers has become a national crisis and need to be addressed urgently. We as a people must stand up for our teachers”.
According to Human Rights Watch, the Anglophone crisis has seen several calamities, loss of property and lives. Over the past two years, a political standoff between Cameroon’s Francophone dominated government and the country’s Anglophone minority-some of whom are seeking independence have become a full-fledged human rights crisis. Hundreds are thought to have been killed, over a thousand homes burnt, and dozens of schools attacked. An estimated 250,000 people have had to flee their homes for safety.
Rwandan Government signs MoU with African Risk Capacity on Cooperation to address the impact of extreme weather events
November 26, 2018 | 0 Comments
By Wallace Mawire
The Government of Rwanda has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the African Risk Capacity (ARC) on cooperation to address the impact of extreme weather events in Rwanda.
The MoU sets out terms and conditions and a framework to facilitate cooperation and collaboration between ARC Agency and the Government of Rwanda to address the impact of extreme weather events, including providing training support to Government personnel.
Rwanda was one of the first signatories of the ARC Establishment Agreement in November 2012) and has a seat on the ARC Agency Governing Board, and its Government has been a strong advocate for food security in the continent, and the imperative for Africa to take more ownership of its development.
Signing on behalf of the Rwandan Government, the Minister of Agriculture & Animal Resources Dr. Mukeshima Gerardine described the cooperation agreement with the African Risk Capacity as a watershed in his country’s commitment to develop a holistic risk management strategy against climate and other natural disasters.
Under the MoU and the derivative workplan, African Risk Capacity will use its parametric insurance tool, the Africa RiskView, to support the Government of Rwanda’s efforts in designing ex-ante customised responses to extreme weather events and other natural disaster risks aimed at reducing impact on the population.
Mohamed Beavogui congratulated the Government and the dynamic leadership of President Kagame both in Rwanda and on the continent. “The signing of the MoU with Rwanda is a testimony of our commitment to progressively provide technical cooperation on climate risk profiling as well as capacity building in disaster risk management in manner that boosts the country’s resilience against the impacts of climate risk and other natural disasters”, he said.
In line with the agreement, ARC will also provide training in risk modelling and quantification to Government personnel. This will facilitate the definition of the country’s risk transfer parameters for each extreme weather event; and discussion on risk transfer opportunities to derive suitable solutions to Rwanda’s climate, food security, agriculture and disaster risk management strategies.
The MoU provides the collaboration framework for the Programme workplan activities and for future activities, as well as a software license for the use of the Africa RiskView (ARV), developed by ARC Agency for monitoring extreme weather events and to underpin the index-based insurance offered by the ARC Limited.
It is at the discretion of the Government of Rwanda to take out an ARC Limited insurance coverage.
The CEO of ARC Limited, Dolika Banda, commended the Government of Rwanda and the team of specialists involved in the process that led to the signing of the MoU. According to her, “the African Risk Capacity is glad to begin a deliberative technical collaboration with the Government of Rwanda towards providing veritable parametric insurance tools to further strengthen the country’s impressive growth record and macroeconomic stability which are already anchored on solid agricultural investment.”
Rwanda has steadily committed to generating sustained agricultural growth, increasing the share of the national budget allocated to agriculture from 3 percent in 2006 to 10.01 percent in 2015, according to official records.
The African Risk Capacity model is an innovative, cost-effective, and is proving that it can assist member-states to strengthen their capacities to better plan, prepare and respond to extreme weather events and natural disasters, thereby achieving the food security for their populations.
About African Risk Capacity (ARC) ARC consists of ARC Agency and ARC Insurance Company Limited (ARC Ltd). ARC Agency was established in 2012 as a Specialised Agency of the African Union to help Member States improve their capacities to better plan, prepare and respond to weather-related disasters. ARC Ltd is a mutual insurance facility providing risk transfer services to Member States through risk pooling and access to reinsurance markets; it is owned by Member States with active insurance policies as well as KfW Development Bank and the UK Department of International Development (DfiD), as capital contributors.
With the support of the United Kingdom, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, Canada, France, The Rockefeller Foundation and the United States, ARC assists AU Member States in reducing the risk of loss and damage caused by extreme weather events affecting Africa’s populations by providing, through sovereign disaster risk insurance, targeted responses to natural disasters in a more timely, cost-effective, objective and transparent manner. ARC is now using its expertise to help tackle some of the other greatest threats faced by the continent, including outbreaks and epidemics.
Sierra Leone: Report sexual harassment, ACC boss urges women
November 25, 2018 | 0 Comments
By Ishmael Sallieu Koroma
The Anti –Corruption Commission (ACC) Commissioner, Francis Ben Kaifala, has encouraged women to come forward to report on sexual harassment to the commission.
Francis Ben Kaifala made the above statement yesterday during the Media Initiative for Women and Girls Empowerment (MIWGEM) symposium on the theme ‘’ Amplifying Voices through Media to End Violence Against women & Girls in the Society’’ at Cabenda, Signal Hill in Freetown.
He said that as a commissioner of the ACC, he was aware of how long women in the university have had trouble with professors taking advantage, with public officers also taking advantage of girls by using their office.
‘’I’m ready to push the boundaries of interpretations in the Anti-corruption Act. I need you to help me, by been willing to come forward, by been willing to spread the message , by been willing to convince other people who are your friend to come forward,’’ he said.
The ACC boss further said that the society should make consciously affirmative actions to protect women and girls adding that this where the media is very strategic as it is a powerful tool of advocate of education as it reach is wide.
‘’As you know institutions like the one I led is an evidence base. We cannot afford to miss it. I want you to understand this, that’s why I want you to come forward and when you’re coming forward come with enough evidences to help me ,help the commission ,help you ‘’,Kaifala Said .
Commissioner Kaifala further said even though society is resisting, in seeing women as equal partner, there is need to double the efforts together to make sure that this message goes across and in doing so, he proffered for both the use of the stick and carrot approach.
He however said the commission was willing to work with all partners in championing women’s issues in the country.
Founder of MIWGEM, Adama Sillah, in her statement said, the Media Initiative for Women and Girls Empowerment was established in 2017 working to provide leadership and empowerment for women and girls through media literacy and advocacy.
‘’It was established in 2017 ,to leverage two important factors that , if well used, could significantly change the narrative for the feminine gender and for the country ,unlocking the untapped power of women and girls through the media,’’ she said .
She said MIWGEM works with young women and girls adding that as a media organization they were very passionate about what must be the media’s role in ending gender and sexual base violence against our women and girls in Sierra Leone.
‘’Today I want us all to take action and make our commitment on what we are all going to do together to help change the narratives to raising our voices through media to ending violence against women and girls in Sierra Leone ,’’Miss Sillah added.
She thanked United Bank for Africa (UBA SL) for supporting there venture through their Each One Reach One Campaign that supports organizations to go into communities and work with children helping them gain the necessary skills to enable them gain the necessary skills such as make up artistry ,graphic designs among others.
Deputy Minister of Information and Communications, Solomon Jamiru Esq on his part praised the initiative stating that the initiative is an emerging cross cutting tool that will change the stories of women in the country.
He said MIWGEM is more than a social construct as it is a drive for human dignity adding that he stands in solidarity with them.
The Deputy information Minister said the media and civil society constitute the bedrock of the society highlighting that President Julius Maada Bio values women.
Lawyer Jamiru said the president was concerned about the issue of women adding that the president recently proclaimed that his government will be taking stringent actions on men who perpetrating violence against women and girls in the country .
The symposium drew media and civil society groups with speakers drawn from Cameroon, Ghana and Sierra Leone’s Gender Adviser making commitment to using media to end SGBV’s in the country.
The MIWGEM symposium was sponsored by UBA SL and Africell Mobile Company in Sierra Leone .