The National Programme Officer for UNFPA Isatu Kajue yesterday told journalists at a news conference convened at the YMCA hall in Freetown by SDI that any country which is not sensitive to gender issues is bound to fail. She said her Organization plays a crucial role in the area of gender and reproductive healthcare, adding that they collaborate with gender advocates and the media to popularize the gender bills.
She said they are busy looking at the various gender legislations in the country and at the same time collaborating with other agencies and line ministries to raise awareness on gender issues.
She pleaded with journalists to use their medium to inform the masses about the significance of the remaining matrimonial causes and sexual offences bills, noting that there is need to also inform the people especially those at the grass root about the importance of the three gender bills which were passed into law in 2007.
The Executive Director of Society for Democratic Initiatives (SDI) Emmanuel Saffa Abdulai recalled that five gender bills had been drafted, but only three bills have been enacted which he said needs to be upgraded.
He said members of the civil society should aid in the sensitization so as to popularize the bills at both urban and local levels.
Categorizing the remaining two drafted bills, he said sexual offences deal with rape, sex with animals, mad people, pornography and other sexual offences which constitute a criminal offence.
He stated that the matrimonial causes bill deals with marital offences.
He pleaded with members of the international community to partner with them in ensuring the enactment and enforcement of the bills.
The occasion was chaired by Mr. Alfred Carew who called for concerted effort in making the enactment of the remaining bills possible.