Ahead of the December 2020 senatorial election, the United Nations Women Liberia Country Office has reaffirmed its commitment of support for women candidates in the election, warning of an emergency in the Liberian Senate which risks having no female senator if none of the female candidates wins this December.
The only female senator Liberia has currently is Grand Bassa County Senator NyobleeKarnga – Lawrence who also formed part of the Women Candidates Meeting that was organized on 2 October in Monrovia by the National Chapter of the African Women Leaders Network.
Karnga – Lawrence is seeking re-election this December, and many more women from various counties are also in the race for their counties’ senate seats, including Nimba’s Edith Gonglo – Weh; Montserrado’s Jemima Wolokollie and Lofa’sMariamuFofana, among others.
In a virtual address, Ms. Marie GorethNizigama, UN Women Representative says the UN Women Office already has an elaborate communication plan underway as well as technical support for these women and it hopes to be able to provide other strategic support as may be articulated, in addition to much needed high level advocacy for success in these polls.
“So I will just reaffirm the commitment of the UN Women Liberia Country Office to follow through on the key areas of support for these women candidates,” she says.
She reaffirms the commitment of the UN Women Liberia Country Office to follow through on the key areas of support for these women candidates.
She thanks the women of Liberia for their solidarity in this struggle, adding: “It is no lean feat considering the emergency in the senate: there may be no woman if none of you win.”
Liberia’s former Chief Justice Gloria Musu Scott tells the women that sometimes you go to the senate because you have a passion for the suffering people, the country, making the difference, the future and understanding the task, but when you get to the senate, “it’s a whole different culture.
“And you know the situation in our country is so bad, the despair, the frustration, the hopelessness, the lack of a sense of a future. Sometimes you even ask yourself why did I come here?” Why did I come here because what you are inside it is so compromised,” she notes.
Speaking at the meeting, Liberia’s former Foreign Minister Madam Marjon V. Kamara cautions that the stakes are very high for women’s continued participation in the critical decision – making that takes place in the senate, affecting all aspects of national governance.
“This is why we are here today and why we must respond with urgency to the presentations which the female contestants will make and their plea for support in varied forms,” Madam Kamara says.
Acting Gender Minister Madam Alice Johnson Howard says it is proven that women are key to sustainable development and quality of life, noting that they are in the majority when it comes to advocacy on women’s voice to be heard and other social atrocities in the society.
According to her, women are no longer considered mere announcers of peace, rather, a source of power and symbol of progress, thereby encouraging women to continue to stand up for what they believe in.
In her presentation, Grand Bassa County Senator NyonbleeKarnga – Lawrence says she wants to be re-elected because she has been tested and she has been a senator for eight years, pushing women issues in the Senate.
Grand Cape Mount County Senatorial candidate Madam HawaCornehBropkeh says she has been petitioned by her people because they know that they are trouble, noting that their leaders that the are presently in the senate do not speak for the people.
“And in order for things to change, we need representation. Not only representation for females but representation for the entire county,” she notes.
By Winston W. Parley