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Joint Stakeholders Workshop on Women Rights winds-up

Mar 29, 2011, 2:52 PM | Article By: Yusuf Ceesay

A two-day joint stakeholder’s workshop for sharing best practices on effective implementation on women's right instruments ended on 24 March 2011.

The forum held at the Baobab Holiday Resort, in Bijilo was organised by the Child Protection Alliance (CPA) with funding from the African Centre for Democracy and Human Rights Studies (ACDHRs).

It brought together participants from armed and security services, young people, students, and other relevant stakeholders.

It seeks to share best practices and experiences and to address the problem of comprehending the effective implementation of women's rights instruments both at national and international level.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, the executive director of the ACDHRs, Hannah Foster, said that the workshop had shared a sense of partnership in the society. "It is very important that young men and young women come together to know their rights," she said.

She said that the ACDHRs has been providing support for women’s groups that are working in rights, economic empowerment, and in political participation in young women and men.

Madam Foster also urged the participants to contribute and put things together as it is key in any household.

"Having a forum where we learn more about what religious obligations and the laws of The Gambia have for women is indeed a step in the right direction," said the ACDHRs boss.

She said the women’s bill in the country is a first step thought to include the provisions of CEDAW and the protocol on the rights of women in Africa.

She said The Gambia is a state party that has ratified the two main instruments (CEDAW and African Women's Right Protocol) and yet has not gone further to domesticating or even start to implementing them.

"It is important that as women we know what obligation we expect from our government as well as what we as citizens are expected to carry out," she said.

She further calls on young people to partner for meaningful development as well as to build a better world for ourselves and feature generation.

"The need for young people to know their rights is indeed worthy," she noted. She congratulated the Women Bureau together with women groups for pushing for the women's bill in creating an example for Africa.

She further advised young people to take ownership of those documents to be able to pave a part calling for the implementation of the Women's Act as it is very crucial for the development of young men and women. 

Speaking earlier, Malang Jersey, Director of Youths and Sports, said he was delighted to be associated with the forum where young men and young women came together to learn about their rights, which links to their development, especially the rights of the women.

He revealed his ministry’s support to the youth to see that these rights are implemented in our communities.

Other speakers included Amie Kujabi, Youth Coordinator of CPA, who reaffirmed her office's commitment to protecting children and promoting their welfare.

Issues deliberated on at the two-day forum included essential leadership qualities, gender and gender based violence, Women's Act 2010 provisions and enforcement mechanisms, and young people's participation in national development.