Sierra Leone News: Govt. Urged to Create Gender Equity Court

At Launching at FBC…

President of 50/50 Group, Dr. Fatou Taqi

President of 50/50 Group, Dr. Fatou Taqi, has launched the Gender Equity Society Fourah Bay College University of Sierra Leone branch. The launching took place at the E.J Hall, Strasser King Building with the theme: ‘New World, We Imagine,’ on Saturday 8th June, 2019.

The launching of the society came twenty seven years after the Institute of Gender Research and Documentation (INGRADOC) was established in 1992 by the University of Sierra Leone and linked with the Centre for West African Studies (CWAS) of the University of Birmingham.

Its mission is to develop both national and international human resources for the empowerment of men and women, boys and girls and to promote peace and social justice by working for gender equity and making equality between the two sexes work through teaching, research and training.

Speaking at the ceremony Dr. Fatou Taqi, disclosed that she is very elated because they were contemplating having a Gender Equity Society and that the launching of the Gender Equity Society is a move in the right direction in achieving the mission for the establishment of the department which is to promote peace and social justice by working for gender equity.

She further explained that it manifests dividends of decades of work and steadfastness by various individuals who could be referred to as pioneers working towards achieving gender equity by bringing men and women together. ‘There is going to be sustainability because we have young people that are involved, and I believe with all hands on deck we will get to where we want; where we see gender parity, men and women serving and making decisions collectively, working together to see a better Sierra Leone,’ she said.

She added that by encouraging students regardless of sex to work together, respect and give support to each other, there is much to be achieved.

Justice M.D. Kamara of the Court of Appeal in her statement disclosed that it is in recognition of the Judiciary’s contributions towards gender equality and women’s empowerment in the country, particularly through the justice system, that her experience will lend credence to a just and equitable Sierra Leonean society as embedded in the theme: ‘A New World, Imagine’.

She went on to say: ‘Already, we have measures in place for the effective implementation of a New World, We Imagine. It seems to me that what is obstructing us from realizing the full effects of these measures is lack of knowledge and appreciation of their relevance when properly invoked.’

She highlighted the role of the Judiciary to narrowing the gap of inequality experienced amongst various groups through gender-based laws, peace and social justice.

Justice Kamara said the role of the Judiciary is to ensure that people who are accused of gender-based violence are judged swiftly without delay and punishment meted out to them. “The legislature should also ensure that the punishment is commensurate to the gravity of the offence according to the application of law,” she affirmed.

She recommended that in order to achieve this and create impact in society, the government should create a special court under the Family Support Division and assign judges who are knowledgeable in family law, those who appreciate that it is not right for family members, elders, clergy, parents or society in general to cover-up offences in the name of settlement.

She rounded-up by saying that what is paramount is that we show determination to pursue gender equity and social justice. In that regard, she said, the free quality basic/civic education will serve as one of the pillars upon which we will anchor our hopes for a gender balanced, just and equitable Sierra Leone, “a new Sierra Leone/World we Imagine.”

The event was climaxed by reading of poems and musical performances by students of the department in appreciation of the launching.





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