by Alagi Yoro Jallow
This is for those of us who still think that women can only manage kitchen sinks and not good at Governance. Some of the world biggest and successful economies are led by women. Leading lights include Theresa May of Great Britain (GDP USD2.619 trillion), Angela Markel of Germany (USD3.467 trillion USD) and Jacinda Ardern of New Zealand (USD185 billion). Theresa May is effectively in charge of United Kingdom’s nuclear arsenal.
Other heads of government around the world include; Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovi? of Croatia, Kersti Kaljulaid of Estonia, Dalia Grybauskaite of Lithuania, Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca of Malta, Michelle Bachelet of Chile, Katrín Jakobsdóttir of Iceland, Erna Solberg of Norway, Ana Brnabic of Serbia and Mercedes Aráoz of Peru.
These leaders are equally juggling other responsibilities as mothers, wives and sisters. Jacinda Ardern of New Zealand fell pregnant shortly after assuming office. She told her detractors that, “she’s pregnant, not incapacitated.” In many parts of the world, including the Gambia, we are still stuck with the “what if the President gets pregnant” excuse.
Patriarchal misogynists, many of them serving in Kenya’s parliament, are yet to give effect to the two thirds gender constitutional rule that places a requirement on parliament and other elected organs of governance not to consist more than two thirds of either gender.
In Africa we can only count Saara Kuugongelwa, Prime Minister of Namibia. President Ameenah Gurib-Fakim of Mauritius recently resigned due to financial impropriety,former Liberian president Ellen Johnson Sirleaf,Joyce Bandaws president of Malawi from 7 April 2012-31 May 2014Mame Madior Boye former Senegalese Prime Minister during Abdoulaye Wade, Aminata Toure Prime Minister under Macky Sall In the Gambia the longest serving female Vice president Isatou Njie-Saidy under Yahya Jammeh and short-lived Vice president Fatoumatta -Jallow Tambjang under President Adama Barrow. The absence of women at the very top of public leadership is probably informed by our general attitude towards women in Africa.
It is sad that many of us still believe that to have balls is to know everything.
Spain has demonstrated what women empowerment means: “Spain has set a record; female participation in government. 11 of the 17 ministers sworn in yesterday are women (61%). Prime minister Pedro Sanchez says he wants his progressive government to be a “loyal reflection of the best in a society it aspires to serve”.
In the female-dominated cabinet, ladies hold the economy, finance, defense, foreign affairs & education portfolios – a post-kickback government unequivocally committed to equality. Yes. Breaking barriers: a planet away? (Source: BBC)”
President Adama Barrow in one fell swoop dumped women who propped his first Cabinet. In the national announcement preceded by a soothing preamble on cabinet appointments, the President retained only two female Cabinet Secretaries and appointed fresh male faces.
Home-bound cabinet reshuffle shocker of 2 women Cabinet Secretaries out of 14 of their male colleagues. This is not about political correctness. It is about representative democracy, this is a disaster and setback for the country.