Dakar, Senegal (PANA) – A two-day regional workshop on the rights of African women opened here Monday with participants looking examining how the Protocol on the Rights of Women in Africa can be better utilized and popularized.
The meeting, which brought together legal minds from mainly French-speaking African countries, was organized by “Equality Now”, an international human rights organization, and the Inter-African Network for Women, Media, Gender Equity and Development bearing French acronym (FAMEDEV).
Opdning the workshop, Senegal’s Justice Minister, Aminata Toure, pledged her government’s cooperation with Equality Now and partners.
“We are completely open to you and your partners, including FAMEDEV,” she said, adding that civil society groups have the ability to push the government in moving forward.
According to her, 47 percent of Senegal’s MPs are women and therefore politically, the country is getting there with regards to equal representation of both men and women, she said.
Also addressing participants, the Director of the Nairobi-based Equality Now, Faiza Jama Mohamed, said “we want to see an end to violence against women.”
She emphasized that the purpose of the workshop was to see how to use the Protocol on the Rights of Women in Africa for the benefit of women.
She said: “When we get together, we want to see a difference – and this protocol becomes a living document so that it brings about change for women.”
She listed the problems facing women as domestic violence, female genital mutilation, and sexual harassment, among others.
-0- PANA MLJ/VAO 30July2012