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Politics of Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Source: GNA

31st December Women’s Movement, an absolute part of change – Nana Konadu

Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings, President of the 31st December Women’s Movement (DWM), on Tuesday said one of the main pillars on which the movement was established is participatory democracy.

She noted that its establishment and empowering influence did not affect only members but women across the country which had caused them to be partners in community and national development.

Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings made the observation at the 30th anniversary celebration of the Movement on the theme, "Our Walk Into Women Empowerment,” in Accra.

She pointed out that the movement was established at a time when the country's economy was in an awful state but was able to institute programmes that had affected women positively throughout the country.

“The movement over the past 30 years can boast of transformed and empowered women who are now achievers and financially stable due to the small scale enterprises such as shea butter making, bakery, petty trading and self employment and also day care centres they had engaged in.”

According to Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings, more than 1,000 day care centres had been established across the country by the movement, providing a head start in education and could boast of children they started with who were now graduates and working in recognised institutions.

She noted that though the movement faced some challenges towards improving the lives of women politically, economically and culturally; women empowerment was a process which still had a long way to go.

Former President Jerry John Rawlings, pointed out that without women, the country could not have achieved the political and electoral processes it was enjoying currently.

He said the movement stood up for the development of the disadvantaged in society and women’s rights had been boosted over the years through well formulated policies.

Former President Rawlings said the movement had propagated ideals of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) through policies and philosophies and taken an active lead in the country's socio-economic development.

He pointed out that the NDC was fighting against two enemies; a perceived enemy and a traitor, and since the party could not fight them at the same time, there was the need for one to go.

“The party has lost its sense of political morality and moral high ground under which it was formed,” he stressed.

Former President Rawlings pointed out that, the party had won elections on the grounds of integrity and needed to do away with the culture of greed, thievery, lies, selfishness and political turpitude.

He said it was important for the country to remember the sacrifices that many had endured and advised members to ponder over the direction they would want the country to take.

Former President Rawlings congratulated members of the movement and women across the country on their three decades of political activism and development.

Ms Peace Aryee, National Women’s Project Co-coordinator of the movement, noted that the movement had contributed to poverty reduction, abolition of some customs and traditions that hindered women’s development.

She indicated that the movement had helped women to have positive image of themselves and political consciousness by involving them in all political decisions.

Ms Aryee said the movement could now boast of over one million members across the country and would continue to fight for women empowerment by addressing challenges that confronted women.**