The Ministry of Gender and Social Children Protection has emphasized the need for the protection of the rights of every woman and Child in the country.
Acccording to the Gender Ministry, the full protection of women and children rights will create the avenues for their contributions to the process of rebuilding the country.
The ministry noted that in the past, most women were often left behind by low representation- something that has created negative belief that women are to be at the back, while their male counterparts are ahead of the national development agenda.
Addressing a group of reporters on Thursday, March 26, 2015 at the Ministry of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism on Capitol Hill during its regular Press Briefinf, Minister Julia Duncan Casell assured that Liberian women will raised their concerns on a number of amendments in the Constitution at the upcoming National Constitution Conference scheduled for March 29 to April 15 in Bong County.
According to Minister Cassell, at this conference, the women of Liberia will be in a better position pursue their rights and other issues affecting them in the society.
She noted that Liberian women were of the strongest conviction that the Constitution of Liberia reflects a gender responsive language by referring to he or she in reference to men and women and boys and girls,.
She said Liberian women, however, will be calling for the protection of persons from discrimination irrespective of gender, marital status, health status, age, disabilities and circumstances of birth.
She added that the women will also emphasize that Constitution specifically guarantees the protection and promotion of women and children rights. “The women have said they want a constitution that protects the institution of marriage in Liberia; they want a Constitution that protects individuals from force marriage, and recognizes the three types of marriages- statutory, customary and common law- that’s our submission that the constitution puts the legal age of consent at 18 years.”
Equal representation of women and men in every elected, selected, or appointed position in both public and private sectors, as well as a fair representation of persons with disabilities, she noted, must be emphasized by the Constitution of Liberia.
The Gender also indicated that the women of Liberia want the various political parties to ensure that no more than fifty percent of elected or appointed positions shall be of the same gender.
Meanwhile, Minister Duncan Cassell has described the ensuing constitution review in Bong County as very crucial- not just for the present generation, but the future.
“We see it as the only opportunity Liberia has to integrate gender into the Constitution, thereby changing the lives of all citizens for the better,” said the minister.
By Lewis S. Teh