a fresh policy challenge:coalition building for women

Amanda odoi
Dilys Amoabeng
Esther Pokoo-Aikins
 Championing women’s
 What Ghana stands to gain
 Rationale for the policy paper  Possible structure of the
 Expected challenges
 Activities of the coalition
 Objectives of the policy paper
 Why we are recommending
coalition building
 Conclusion
If you want to develop Africa
you must develop the leadership
of African women (Soukeyna Ba
cited in Manuh, 1998, p. 1)
Championing Women’s Participation
 Quota – 40% representation of women in all sectors of the
country (1998)
 Ongoing support for women in local governance through
allocated funds (2002).
 Ministry for Women’s and Children’s Affairs (MOWAC)
program to support women’s political campaigns (2010 to date)
Rationale For The Policy Paper
 Women’s participation in the national parliament stands at
 Male bias in conceptualisation of leadership
 Diversity among women poses challenges to participation
of recognition of benefits of women’s effective
participation in decision making
 Lack
 Challenges in engaging men
Objectives of the Policy Paper
 Establish a sustainable coalition to improve women’s
political participation.
 More specifically:
• Recommend possible structure of the coalition
• Recommend some activities of the coalition
Why Are We Recommending
South Africa - National Women’s Coalition (NWC)
develops Women’s Charter
 Nigeria and Rwanda – women’s dialogue forums
 Zambia and Zimbabwe – women-only political parties
What Ghana Stands To Gain
 Greater reach and credibility
 Coordinated approach to advocacy
 Exercise citizenship
Structure of the Coalition
Ministry of Women and Children Affairs (MOWAC)
Membership base
Gatekeepers of communities-queen mother’s,
Community organisations-religious groups,
-women aspirants
Other human rights advocates- LAWA, FIDA
International Donors & Diverse UN agencies
Informal Support
Persons & groups interested in women’s political leadership but would
rather remain anonymous ( or at the background) e.g. men’s groups
Activities Of The Coalition
 Civic education – e.g voter education
 Leadership training & mentoring of women political leaders
 Ensuring accountability to government commitments through
media engagement & media capacity development
 Engaging men in supporting the coalition
Expected Challenges For The Coalition
 Men’s resistance
 “I don’t know how many men will be willing to vacate their seats for a
woman to contest because me I won’t” (a male parliamentarian in
 Lobbying political parties on giving up winnable seats for
 Convincing women to take up public office
 Persuading electorates on the need for women’s involvement in
political decision-making
 Institutions, social and political structures that reinforce gender
Key benefits of the coalition
• Lobbying for a review of relevant laws to enhance women’s
opportunity for political participation
• Holding government accountable for its commitment
• Holding the media accountable for its portrayal of women
• Mechanism for networking amongst women’s organisations
to support implementation for programs at the grassroots