Ms Eugenia Afflu, a form two student of the E.P.C Mawuko Girls in Ho, has appealed to the government and other relevant authorities across the globe to develop measures that would ensure maximum protection and safety of girls.
She said efforts must be enhanced to build a strong society, where girls were free from discrimination, gender and sexual-based violence, harassment, teenage pregnancy and any other forms of abuse that retarded their holistic development.
Ms Afflu made the appeal when she acted like Dr Archibald Yao Letsa, Volta Regional Minister as part of activities marking this year’s International Day of the Girl Child.
It was under a ‘Take Over Event’ on the theme: “Our Time is Now: Our Rights, Our Future,” and included Inter-Generational Dialogue on challenges confronting girls and how to curtail the problems to grant the opportunities needed for girls to stay safe.
The programme was organised by the Department of Gender in partnership with the Department of Children, Ghana Education Service, Ghana Health Service and the Volta Regional Coordinating Council with sponsorship from Plan International Ghana.
Ms Afflu said girls had a lot to offer in the developmental agenda of the country when given the needed support and the enabling environment to explore their potential to the fullest.
She commended Plan International Ghana for its continuous efforts over the years in advancing mechanisms that promoted the safety and well-being of children, especially girls and ensuring that their rights were safeguarded.
Ms Juliet Ahortor, another student from the school, who acted like Dr Senanu Kwesi Djokoto, Acting Volta Regional Director of Health, demonstrated how effective collaboration between management and staff of institutions could result in higher productivity.
Mrs Thywill Eyra Kpe Volta, Regional Director of the Department of Gender said it was important to pave the way for girls to overcome challenges and chart a positive path for the future.
She said The Girls Take-Over Campaign and Inter-Generational Dialogue on Challenges confronting girls provided a unique opportunity for girls to take over key spaces and serve as a mentorship space for their development.
The Director said the International Day of the Girl Child was recognised globally to encourage, empower and amplify commitments in girls to achieving greater heights in society and the need for society to protect them against abuses.
The Day, she said, was designated to eliminate gender-based challenges that girls faced around the globe, including child marriage, adolescent pregnancy, low career progression, discrimination and poor learning outcomes.
Mrs Kpe said it was imperative to build the confidence of girls and support them to take up leadership roles, urging boys to support the girls in their various roles, especially in the household chores to enable them to grow and develop together as partners in development.
Mr Israel Akrobortu, Volta Regional Director of the Department of Children emphasised the need for a concerted effort to address challenges facing children.
He said issues of children must be a priority of the municipal and district assemblies and urged them to allocate funds towards the celebration of the Day in subsequent years for them to showcase their talents.
Mr Akrobortu said the abuse of girls in recent times was worrisome and that it was time to talk drastic measures to deal with the issues to promote the well-being of children and safeguard their children and that of the country.
He commended Plan International Ghana for complementing efforts by the government through its activities to deal with the situation.