The United Nations Children?s Fund (UNICEF) has asked Ghana to join global the ?Thousand Day,? activism to mark the end of the Millennium Development Goals.
The Thousand Day activism aims at celebrating remarkable achievements whilst identifying short falls and marshalling resources to meet set target before the end of MDG.
Dr Greeta Rao Gupta, UNICEF Deputy Executive Director, made the recommendation during a working meeting with Ghana?s Minister for Gender, Children and Social Protection at the UNICEF headquarters in New York.
The working meeting which was on the sidelines of the on-going 57 Session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women was to discuss the new mandate of Ghana?s Gender Ministry and identify strategic action plans within the UNICEF framework for collaboration.
She said Ghana is positioned as a leader in the region as it has already signed up to a promised renewed commitment to end under five mortality with cross ministerial activity ? Ministry of Health, Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning and others.
Dr Gupta assured Ghana of continuous UNICEF support to move forward its social intervention policies ? school feeding programme, free textbooks, and school uniform distribution, livelihood empower programmes and other pro-poor policies, which are laudable.
She said UNICEF will continue to work with Ghana especially the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection to share Ghana?s achievements with other countries, which are challenged in implementing social intervention programmes.
Nana Oye Lithur said Ghana under President John Dramani Mahama would continue to build a strong foundation for social and economic transformation under the Better Ghana Agenda.
?We will continue to work with UNICEF in the early childhood development programmes, child protection policies, violence against children and develop new social protection and empowerment programmes together,? Nana Oye Lithur stated.
She also discussed issues including child trafficking, migrant porters (?Kayaye,?), parental neglect, streetism, sexual abuse of children, medical support services for victims, victim support and rehabilitation.
In an interview with the Ghana News Agency, Nana Oye Lithur acknowledged the work of civil society groups, in Ghana, who have consistently held successive Governments accountable and also partnered with Government to ensure the rights of women are protected.
?We also appreciate the good work of the media in highlighting gender issues and the continued support of the church, imams, and other religious leaders, who have provided spiritual and humanitarian support to women and girls.
?We recognise that the involvement of men and boys in the quest for gender equality cannot be underestimated and call on our men to help us realise and fulfil our rights as partners in development in Ghana.
?We applaud the gender sensitive men and boys who recognise and respect our rights and space and our role as partners in developing Ghana.
?We have made significant strides as a country to ensure the rights of women are respected, protected and fulfilled.
?We have done this through legislation, policies, programmes and several other interventions. In spite of these, we have our challenges as a country in advancing the cause of women, and we are keenly aware of these, and will work assiduously to ensure they are surmounted?.