By Olimatou Coker
The National Council for Civic Education has commenced the orientation of the inter party committee youth branch (YOBIPC) on voter education in Diabugu Batapa, URR.
Supported by Unicef Gambia under the joint UN Women Leadership Project, ‘strengthening women’s political participation and leadership through reformed legislation, community-level leadership, and political parties’, the activity focuses on voter education campaign aimed at shaping the mindsets of the IPC youth branch to amplify support for women political candidates/leaders.
Addressing the engagement, Ansumana Ceesay, NCCE senior programme officer said ten interactive sessions will be conducted in LRR, CRR and URR targeting 500 participants, mainly youth representatives of political parties in the districts, youth and women leaders as well as civil society organisations, under the theme; ’empowerment beyond pronouncement, women in politics and leadership’.
“We believe having women and youth in political leadership is very much in line with our constitution which guarantees basic human rights for all to enjoy equal opportunities,” he said.
He said providing space for women to safely express their views and opinions is imperative in the pursue for social and environmental justice and peace.
“We urgently need a forum in which women can engage with each other and those in power in a frank discussion to establish the long-term and meaningful solutions to their perennial underrepresentation in politics and decision making,” he said.
Mariama Drammeh, lady councillor for Sandu district, said the massive participation of women in politics has failed to yield dividend when it comes to their empowerment.
“We are relegated to organising, mobilising and campaigning for men contesting for political offices, instead of us running. So, without the active participation of women and the incorporation of their perspective at all levels of decision-making – the goals of equality, sustainable development and peace will be difficult to achieved,” she said.
Ebrima Janko, a member of YOBIPC URR branch commended NCCE and partners for organising the orientation session and urged his fellow young men to promote, encourage and support women participation in politics.