Former Sri Lanka President, Mrs Chandrika Kumaratunga, has stated that, “having many women in parliament [who can not make an impact] would not solve the problem.”
Addressing media practitioners and members of Civil Society organizations on the Club de Madrid’s third mission in Sierra Leone on the African Women Leaders Project, Mrs Kumaratunga said, “the aim of the project is the inclusion of women in governance…”
She explained that the project which is titled: “underpinning and developing democratic electoral processes through the empowerment of women parliamentarians and leadership in sub-Saharan Africa,” was jointly implemented by Club de Madrid and the Campaign for Good Governance (CGG).
Mrs Kumaratunga noted that, “education is the key in uplifting the status of women,” adding that it was in that vain that the mission decided to open a resource centre for parliamentarians that would be followed by training for parliamentarians.
A member of the Liberian Senate, Musu Scott who was among the mission, noted that Civil Society and the media had a critical role to play in post war reconciliation.
She noted that women in parliament were at most times helpless where majority ruled, adding that the “media and Civil Society should act as safety nets for these female parliamentarians”.
Giving a background about the project Dr Nana Pratt, who chaired the programme, explained that this 18 months’ project aimed at supporting women’s leaders particularly parliamentarians in each country to increase their ability to participate in the electoral processes; improve their capacity for leadership in elected offices and enhance public confidence in their work, thus increasing opportunities for greater participation of women in leading governmental policy making positions.