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Ghana closest to achieving MDGs in West Africa

By Elsie
Appiah Osei/ Doris Ablordey, GNA

Accra, June 29, GNA – Mrs Fadimata Alainchar,
the Country Director of Plan International Ghana, has observed that of all the
West African countries, Ghana is closest to achieving the Millennium
Development Goals (MDGs).

“And looking at how the SDGs goals are being
worked around to be achieved, there is no doubt that Ghana will make headway in
that too, however, economic growth, population growth and increase in economic
outcomes if not well handled will hinder the progress,” she said.

Mrs Alainchar said this at the GAA Lunch Desk
(GLD) in Accra on Thursday where stakeholders engaged as well as held
themselves accountable as duty bearers in the implementation of policies and
practical plans to help address inhumane and unjust practices meted out to
women, children and the youth.

Plan International Ghana is a Non-Governmental
Organisation with a five-year Girls Advocacy Alliance project aimed at helping
to eliminate gender-based violence and abuses meted out to women.

The Alliance, which is being funded by the
Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, seeks to create a free
and safe environment for women and girls in the country.

Mrs Alainchar said the laws, policies and
plans to fight gender-based violence must be implemented and called on NGOs to
establish networks with community women in the fight against those abuses to
pave the way for their active participation in initiatives and decision-making.

She appealed to government, civil society
groups and all stakeholders to join forces in empowering women for change.

Mrs Anna N. Nabere, the Project Manager, said
to complement the efforts of government, Plan International Ghana, in
collaboration with the Dutch Embassy, was taking up this high level engagement
with relevant stakeholders at the national level to discuss ways of increasing
access to Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET) and decent work
opportunities for girls.

She said the approach would enable the project
team to contribute to the effective implementation of youth employment
interventions by government.

“As part of setting the agenda for advocating
for improved access to TVET and decent work opportunities, Plan International
Ghana, in collaboration with the Dutch Embassy, is organising this meeting to
get stakeholders understand the issues and their roles in addressing decent
work deficits for girls and young women in Ghana.

“The objective is to deal with child marriage,
commercial sexual exploitation of children and child sex tourism as well as
harnessing technical and vocational capacity for national development being the
four main thematic areas it seeks to address to create opportunities and a
decent environment for girls,” she said.

“By the end of this GAA Lunch Desk
stakeholders should be able to open up other opportunities for engagement by
the project team,” she said.

Mrs Nabere accepted that the task ahead was
not going to be easy but it was important to empower girls at all cost to bring
about the needed development.

She said in all the fights towards achieving
girls’ rights and traditional practices had been the main obstacle for change
and, thus, there was the need to critically look at those practices.

A maximum of 25 participants attended the GLD
to discuss issues of concern to the project.

Participants included the Minister of Gender,
Children and Social Protection, Minister of Education, Minister of Employment,
members of the Trades Union Congress, COTVET, Unilever, and Fan Milk.

GNA

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