FIDA calls for gender balance
THE Federation of International Women Lawyers (FIDA) has appealed to the President, Mr J. A. Kufuor, and his team to critically examine their appointments to ensure equity and gender balance. According to the federation, given the low representation of women in Parliament, unless a conscious effort is made, women would be left out in the equation of decision making. This was contained in a congratulatory message signed by the Press Secretary, Mrs Beatrice Duncan, on behalf of the members and executives of FIDA. The message said ?FIDA wishes to congratulate President Kufuor on the occasion of his assumption to the high office of Chief Executive of Ghana and Commander-in-Chief of the Ghana Armed Forces?. The Federation said, as with previous governments, it would continue its watchdog role as a human rights organisation for Ghanaian women and children. It expressed satisfaction at the commitment to women?s issues by the New Patriotic Party (NPP) as outlined in its manifesto. The Federation said ?Indeed, the appointment of Ms Elizabeth Ohene as the adviser on Public Affairs to the President is gratifying. It, however, noted with deep concern and disappointment that appointments such as Speaker, First Deputy and Second Deputy Speakers have all been given to men. The Federation has, therefore, appealed to the new government to, within the framework of positive change and the letter and spirit of the 1992 Constitution, commit itself to gender equity. The message said while the Federation does not dispute the integrity and professional calibre of new appointees, it finds it imperative to bring to the attention of the President that the implication of current appointments automatically suggests that men occupy all the highest levels in decision-making. It mentioned some of the key positions which are male dominated as those of Vice President, Majority Leader and Minority Leader.