Lady Julia Osei-Tutu, wife of Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, the Asantehene, has underscored the need for parents to invest in the education of their girl-children to help bridge the gender gap in socio-economic development.
Speaking at this year ‘International Day of the Girl –Child’ held at Kofofu, in the Amansie Central Municipality on Tuesday, Lady Julia advocated for increased economic empowerment for the girl-child.
She denounced certain negative cultural attitudes that tended to impede the personal development and well-being of younger girls and said investing in the education of girls would aid female economic empowerment.
“This would also enable them affirm their rightful positions on the social ladder and thus put them in a better stead as tomorrow’s leaders to contribute to the achievement of the key targets set in the newly-adopted Sustainable Development Goals”, she added”.
This year’s event was commemorated on the theme: “The power of the Adolescent Girl: Vision for 20130”.
The programme was jointly sponsored by United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) in collaboration with the Otumfuo Charity Foundation, Ashanti Regional Coordinating Council (RCC) and the Ashanti Queen Mothers Association (ARQA), with her royal highness, Lady Julia as the guest of honour.
Dr Babatunde A Ahonsi, UNFPA Country representative noted that the day was significant to provide the platform to reflect on the achievements of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly’s resolution reached on December, 19, 2011, which sought to recognize girls’ rights and the unique challenges girls face around the world.
The day also offered the opportunity to plan for the sustainable development of the girl child in the next 15 years whiles considering the political investment in the power of the adolescent girls’ as a fundamental key to breaking the inter- generated transition of poverty, violence, exclusion and discrimination, he added.
Dr Babatunde observed that the nation hopes to achieve this through equitable and sustainable development outcomes to achieve economic growth.
He stressed that ‘‘if girls are effectively supported during their adolescent years, they would have the potential to change the world – both as empowered girls of today and as tomorrow’s workers, mothers, entrepreneurs, mentors and political leaders.’’
This, he noted, was an instrument in realizing the power of adolescent girls to uphold their rights today and a more equitable prosperous future, adding that humanity was an equal partner in solving the problems of climate change, political conflict, disease prevention and economic growth
Ms. Mary Juntuah, Munipal Chief Executive (MCE) for Bekwai, Dr Bernard Annim Akoto, Medical Doctor, Kokofu hospital, Chiefs, and Queens who took turns to address the gathering.