BY ROSEMOND BOATENG ADDAI
THE EBAN Centre for Human Trafficking Studies (ECHTS) has, as the world marked International Women’s Day yesterday, called on the Parliament of Ghana to pass the Affirmative Action Bill.
According to the group, to achieve sustainable national development, the ultimate solution lies in the fundamental restructuring of society on the foundation of gender equality and justice.
A release signed by Rev Osei Sarpong, Executive Director, ECHTS, stated that for Ghana to achieve gender parity, the passage of the Affirmative Action Bill would serve as a strategy to achieve gender equality.
He said “the Affirmative Law would accelerate women’s empowerment which contributes to poverty reduction and ultimately contribute to a sustainable national development.
“Also, when more women are empowered it cuts the supply of women and children in trafficking businesses.
“Women are generally responsible for the children; thus, an empowered woman is capable of providing protection for her children,” he added.
The Executive Directive, making these points on the theme ‘Press For Progress’ on International Women’s Day, said gender equality is a right.
“Fulfilling this right is the best chance we have in meeting some of the most pressing challenges of our time, from economic crisis and lack of healthcare, to climate change, violence against women and escalating conflicts. Women are not only more affected by these problems, but also possess ideas and leadership to solve them,” he explained.
He revealed that human trafficking was on the rise due to increasing mobility, the development of new technologies and generally low risks and high profit involved.
He added that data on the prevalence of the crime shows that majority of its victims are women and girls; sexual exploitation is by far the first purpose of trafficking of women.
He explained that “most trafficked women are forced into commercial sexual services while many are also victims of domestic servitude. To deal with trafficking of women, there is the need to achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls as stipulated in the Sustainable Development Goal.”
Rev Sarpong said due to the patriarchal nature of society, women have experienced limited opportunities whose results have not helped the development goals of the nation, as women have experienced limited opportunity to contribute their talents to the country’s advancement and are most negatively affected by endemic poverty.