April 10, 2019 7:24 pm

Hon. Cynthia Mamle Morrison, the Minister for Gender, Children and Social Protection, has called on the African Youth, more precisely the Ghanaian Youth to be ‘Role Models’ to their fellow youth across the continent. The sector Minister expressed her belief in the youth as they have the power to play vital role in the development of their associate youth and therefore contribute to the development of every youth person in Ghana and Africa at large.

“You have the power to serve as role models and be the voice of empowerment to your counterparts and everyone around you. As you get power through empowerment, use that power not just for yourself but to empower somebody; set somebody free by the freedom you have gained. Be the voice for the voiceless by evangelising and educating people on what is right or wrong,” She noted.

Hon. Cynthia Morrison made the call to youth when she officially launched the ‘Girls Get Equal’ (GGE) Campaign by Plan International at their 2019 West & Central Africa Regional Youth Forum (for 14 African countries) held on Wednesday 10th April 2019 in Accra, Ghana. The initiative seeks to empower young women to develop the interest in assuming leadership positions to promote and advance national development.

The campaign theme is: “No-One Gets Equal Until Girls Get Equal.”

The theme stands to attract national leaders and policy makers to give girls and women, both able and with disability, adequate representation in all decision-making processes and developmental gatherings organised from the local level to the international level. It is also to empower girls to resist being forced into practices they were unhappy with such as child marriage and child prostitution.

Participating countries were Ghana, Central Africa Republic, Burkina Faso, Guinea, Liberia, Niger, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Mali, Cameroon, Guinea-Bissau, Benin, Senegal and Togo.

In her subsequent submission, Hon. Cynthia Morrison commended Plan International for including males in the advocacy campaign.

She said: “If we train only the females to be advocates and not the males, we may find our beautiful and well-educated girls in the hands of such men who may underrate and maltreat them since they have no knowledge about it.”

The Minister gave the assurance that she would embark on the advocacy campaign with the Ghanaian participants of the forum to save young people on the streets to fight for equality and gender balance.

She further advised the participants to handle themselves properly and to aspire for greater things as they could become a powerful force to empower a certain course in the society.

The Director of Plan for west and Central Africa, Mr. Rotumy Djossaya also added his voice to the course by commending his colleagues and other stakeholders for making the programme a meaningful one.

The regional director stated that there was a proper need to create a conducive environment for the youth (especially for the girls and women), where everyone is able to express him or herself to adequately activate the change that is demanded of them.

Through his message, Mr. Djossaya pressed on the youth to actively involve themselves to champion the course to make it a worthy one which will benefit the masses and have a positive impact.

Madam Awo Aidam Amenya, Executive Director for Child Online Africa, on her part advised the youth using social media to do it for the right purpose and not only for posting nice pictures for likes, but rather use social media to champion a worthy course such as the GGE campaign.

She said: “Because I work in the digital space I know there is so much vulnerability of girls in that space and I don’t think it is ok for you to say that I want to get more likes on Facebook therefore I will post a photo which is almost naked of me. It is your future and the reputation you are building for yourself.”

Mr Solomon Tesfamariam, the Country Director of Plan International Ghana, urged all to join the campaign to fight for equality and balance for women and girls as they were key contributors to national development.

He said recommendations made from the summit would be submitted to relevant government institutions for consideration.

Other dignitaries present were; Fati Sewanadu Manasary, Head of Regional Influencing and Partnership, Awo Aidam Amenyah, Regional Youth Coordinator and Executive Director Child Online Africa.

Source: MoGCSP