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Regional News Sat, 20 Jul 2013

Violation of women’s rights, worry to advocates

Despite many international conventions and domestic legislations to protect women, violations of their rights are on the increase, Ms Dorcas Coker-Appiah, Executive Director of Gender Studies and Human Rights Documentation Centre, has said.

Speaking at the on-going training of about 27 journalists selected from various media houses, Ms Coker-Appiah called on state agencies, departments, private organisations and enterprises to work towards removing social and cultural barriers militating against women.

She said a majority of women suffer from spousal beating and boys tease girls when they incidentally menstruate in class, sexual harassment at workplace, denial of pregnant women to write examination and challenges of maternity leave.

“These stereotypes and discrimination as well as social beliefs that women only serve men, have undermined their initiatives to take up leadership positions and participate in governance and decision-making,” Ms Coker-Appiah said.

She said since the inception of the first Republic, only one woman had served in a political party as chairperson.

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Ms Coker-Appiah said there was under-representation of women in both public and private institutions, particularly in Parliament, where out of the 230 parliamentarians, only 30 are women.

She asked Government to be committed to the implementation of constitutional provisions that aim at protecting women’s rights.

Ms Coker-Appiah also called on the Ghanaian media to do proper analysis of issues affecting women, such as the concepts of “equity and equality” as enshrined in the constitutional provisions.

The training is expected to equip media personnel with the necessary knowledge and skills on issues on women’s rights and to ensure effective reporting.

Source: GNA
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