Women as Agents of Change!
As the Common wealth Day is observed today with focus on Women as Agents of Change, permit me wonder aloud if women are not distracted however endowed.
Women constitute over 50% of the world's population which translates into the majority of the electorate, human resource as well as the majority of those affected by policies in place in any given country. Given their numerical strength, it will seem unfair for women to still be clamoring for ONLY a 30% representation and participation in government (the case of Cameroon).
Chasing the Wind
One of the factors responsible for stifling the progress of women is the low level of political education. Whoever said that empty vessels make the loudest noise is so right. One week ago the International Day of the Woman once more churned banal debates about the woman and how free, equal, strong or useful she is in relation to the man. As usual the side attractions stole the attention of the womenfolk. If the fuss wasn't about grabbing a piece of the specially designed fabric, then it was about the much idolized match past and the subsequent merriment. In their huge numbers, they thronged the streets and beer parlors without the least reflection on how to give life to their political dreams.
The Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing (1995) gave a new and better tune to the advancement of women and the recognition of their tremendous contributions to the society. Since then, a good number of women throughout the world have been leveraging their power as leaders in business, politics, science and the media, paving the way for a future for themselves and for all. In spite of their crusading presence as role models, they have a following that is however distracted. One is therefore obliged to think that even as the political environment remains unfavorable for women, there is a general lack of interest and involvement.
How then can women constitute agents of change if their attention is divided?
The 2015 target date for the achievement of the millennium Development Goals is around the corner. Five of the eight goals not only directly concern women, they are interwoven. Maternal health means greater chances of child health and no hunger while gender equality will guarantee access to education and knowledge on HIV prevention.
Although the advancement of women continues to be seen by some in isolation as a women's issue, it is established that unless the potential of every individual woman is tallied, the road to the much desired change may be bumpy and unending no matter the course.