2021 IDGC: Let’s create safe place for the development the girl-child, Akwamuhene

Social Akwamu Chief
Akwamu Chief

Odeneho Kwafo Akoto III, Paramount Chief of the Akwamu, in the Eastern Region has urged Ghanaians to create an enabling environment for girls to grow and realise their full potential.

He said girls were change-makers and the future of every nation who required safe and secured environment that minmised risks and allowed them the opportunity to develop.

Addressing a durbar held at Akwamufie on Monday, to commemorate the 2021 International Day of the Girl Child, Odeneho Akoto III said creating a safe place and investing more in girls’ was, therefore, the surest for them to become successful and useful citizens.

“They are a fundamental source of transformational change,” he added.

The durbar, organised by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and Obaapa Development Foundation, had in attendance Nana Afrakoma II, Paramount Queen Mother of Akwamu, Mr Thomas Ampem , Member of Parliament for Asuogyaman, queen mothers from various traditional areas from all sixteen regions across the country, as well as female students from selected Senior High and Junior High schools in the Asuogyaman District, among others.

The global theme for this year’s event is : “Digital Generation. Our Generation”, while the national theme is: ” The Digital Generation: Promoting Citizenships for Girls without Discrimination.”

The Akwamuhene noted that teenage pregnancy remained a major challenge confronting the state and prevented girls from achieving their full potential.

Data from the Ghana Health Service indicates that the country recorded nearly 110,000 (109,888) teenage pregnancies in 2020 alone.

Out of this, 107,023 were pregnancies recorded among girls between 15-19 years and 2,865 were between girls aged 10-14.

The Paramount Chief said: “We all know that when children are born to children, the cycle of poverty continues, annd this is a cycle we must all work hard to break.”

He also noted that more often than not, girls were burdened with the blame and responsibility of unplanned pregnancies whilst young men responsible escaped relatively unscathed, adding that there must be an intensified education for boys to respect and protect girls.

“Therefore, it is important that from an early age, boys and young men are also educated to respect and protect girls,” he said.

Mr Niyi Ojuolape, UNFPA Resident Representative, highlighted the need for more opportunities for girls in technology and innovation to enable them to make informed decisions.

“Let us create a digital world that is accessible and safe for our girls. Digital access, can help girls find information, connect with peers, build social movements, explore their identities, track their periods and find help for harassment or violence,” he added.

Mr Nyarko reiterated the need to address the teenage pregnancy menace to attain the Sustainable Development Goal five by 2030.

He said one of the ways to minimise the canker was to prosecute all persons, particularly men who impregnated young girls to serve as a deterrent to others.

Mr Samuel Kwame Agyekum, District Chief Executive of Asuogyaman, assured that government was doing all it could to improve girl-child education, not only within the District but across the country.

The International Day of the Girl Child is celebrated each year on October 11, to direct people’s highlight challenges facing girls and to promote girls’ empowerment towards the fulfilment of their human rights.

It also aimed to empower girls and promote gender equality as a crucial step to accelerating sustainable development and bringing an end to all forms of discrimination against girls and women.

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