ACEPA Reviews a Draft Gender Responsive Lawmaking Handbook with other CSOs.

The African Centre for Parliamentary Affairs (ACEPA) under the auspices of the Inclusive Legislatures for Gender Responsive Policies (ILGRP) project convened a stakeholder forum in Accra, Ghana, on Tuesday, March 26, 2024.  The forum brought together Parliamentary Saff of Ghana and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to examine a draft Gender Responsive Lawmaking handbook. 

Addressing the gathering, Ms. Sheila Minkah-Premo, the Consultant on the ILGRP Project, stated that the Gender Responsive Lawmaking handbook, when finalized would serve as a useful reference material for MPs and staff as Parliament revises existing laws as well as enacts new laws that promote the rights of citizens, especially women and girls.  She further explained that the handbook, which is designed as a user-friendly manual, is to promote more equitable and inclusive societies.

The handbook contains details on international obligations and initiatives, sources of Ghana’s laws, formal law-making processes, the role of the parliamentary leadership, MPs, and the Parliamentary service. Ms. Minkah-Premo highlighted how the guide can aid the deliberation, amendment, and enactment of inclusive, gender-responsive laws, aiming to enhance the capacity of both male and female parliamentarians in legislative analysis and debate.

“The handbook aims to assist parliamentary staff in Ghana to effectively assist Members of Parliament with the necessary knowledge and skills on gender analyses in the lawmaking process,” she said.

Ms. Minkah-Premo further noted, that the absence of a system supporting parliamentarians and parliamentary staff in ensuring the passage of gender-responsive laws, has led to the enactment of laws that inadvertently discriminate against women, especially young women, hence the urgency to review and launch the usage handbook. 

Dr. Gifty Adika, the National Parliamentary Advisor and Team Manager, ILGRP, mentioned that the 46-page handbook, currently under review, is expected to be a valuable resource for Members of Parliament and parliamentary staff. Once finalized, it is expected to be a go-to reference guide for parliamentarians and staff, a tool to aid the effective integration of gender perspectives into the legislative process. 

Both the participants from the Parliamentary Service and the representatives from CSOs actively contributed to the review process, reflecting a collaborative effort towards fostering gender-responsive governance. 

The Inclusive Legislatures for Gender Responsive Policies (ILGRP) project is funded by Global Affairs Canada and implemented by ACEPA in partnership with the Parliamentary Centre. 



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