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Regional News of Sunday, 20 February 2005

Source: GNA

Women advised to support rather than depend on their husbands

Mpraeso (E/R), Feb. 20, GNA- The Minister of Women and Children's Affairs, Hajia Alima Mahama, has called on women to change their mind set that when they marry their husbands would take care of them but to acquire skills and work hard to support their husbands. She explained that, men these days are interested in marrying women who have skills and can support them economically when their businesses are in crisis.

This was contained in a speech read on her behalf at the graduation ceremony of 40 Moslem women who were selected from eight zongo communities in Kwahu South and West Districts and trained in batik, tie and dye making.

The training programme was organised by the Islamic Research and Propagation Centre (IRPC), a Non Governmental Organisation (NGO), with funding from the Ghana AIDS Commission.

She advised the graduates not to allow the quest for high profit to make them sacrifices the quality of their products and urged them to plough back their profits into their business.

Hajia Mahama urged Muslim women to be interested in educating their children, especially their daughters.

The National Secretary of the Nasara Club, Mr Umar Hamidu, who represented the Second Lady, Mrs Rahamatu Mahama called on the IRPC to encourage the trainees to also teach others of what they have learnt.

He called on Moslim youths to abstain from premarital sex and advised married couples to be faithful to their partners. The Kwahu South District Monitoring and Evaluation Focal Person on HIV/AIDS , Mr Emmanuel Quacoe Ikpe, called for concerted efforts to fight poverty in the country if the fight against the spread of HIV/AIDS is to succeed.

He explained that it had been established that there was a positive correlation between HIV/AIDS and poverty.

The Executive Director of the IRPC, Mr Ibrahim Mustapher Mohammed said HIV/AIDS was spreading faster among women than men hence the efforts of his organization to economically empower the Moslim women to prevent them from falling prey to the disease.

He said his organisation was working in all the eight zongo communities in the Kwahu areas and intend to construct sheds to be used as workshops for skill training , offices and stores.

Mr Mohammed said his group also intend to train some Moslim young men in sign writing and to establish credit scheme for people trained to enable them raise funds to establish their own businesses.

He said IRPC also intend to establish a school for the teaching of English, Arabic, French, Mathematics and Science for people living in the Zongo communities and appealed for financial support from individuals and organisations.