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Sierra Leone News: Traditional authorities throw support behind women aspirants

Elizabeth Sowei Vandi

Elizabeth Sowei Vandi

Traditional authorities in Kailahun and Kenema have thrown their support for female aspirants seeking elective positions for the 2018 election.
Speaking to the Deputy Mamie Queen of Luawa Chiefdom, Kailahun, Elizabeth Sowei Vandi, “Empowering women at this time is necessary considering the time men have dominated the governance process. Women have always been in the kitchen and were prevented from being part of decision making,” she said. “That has deprived women of their rights as human beings.”
She made this disclosure during the three days leadership training organized in Kenema by SEND Sierra Leone and NMJD with support from Christian Aid, Irish Aid and the Hamilton Family.
The Deputy Mamie Queen maintained they are now forcing their way to prove they can do what the men have been doing over the years. “Presently our aim is to push women issues forward. This has nothing to do with political parties,” she maintained. They will cast their votes for female candidates and not on party or colour as a way of increasing their numbers in governance.
“All we need as women from the men are party symbols. The rest we will handle ourselves. In most cases symbols were given to men leaving the women out,” she said. Political parties should keep their word by awarding the 30% quota to women candidates.
“Leaving women behind for decades has led to the underdevelopment of our nation,” according to the Senior Section Chief Ismail L Foday. He maintained that orientating the women about their roles and responsibilities as leaders gives them the opportunity to go for leadership positions.
Chief Ismail Foday said, “I’ve been talking to my compatriots to see how best we can create space for the women. Gradually we are getting there.”
AMK/11/11/17
By Alhaji M. Kamara
Monday November 13, 2017.

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