The Moremi Initiative has launched the 2014 MILEAD Fellows Leadership Institute to train young women to develop their talents to create a change in their societies. Twenty-eight young women from 26 different African countries, including Sudan, Benin, Gambia, South Africa, Nigeria, Burkina Faso and Ghana, are participating in the programme.
The participants would be engaged in a three-week intensive training in human rights, communication skills, leadership skills, politics and entrepreneurship. The training, which is being hosted by the Institute of African Studies of the University of Ghana, is to enable young women to acquire knowledge to develop their talents.
The Moremi Initiative is a non-governmental organisation which recruits young women every year from African countries to participate in leadership programmes and conferences with the aim of helping them to cultivate the skills that women need to excel in leadership positions, and to expand advocacy of women's issues. A total of 180 young women across Africa have benefitted from leadership training programme under the Moremi Initiative since 2008.
Speaking at the official launch and opening ceremony in Accra on Monday, the Chief Executive Officer of Stratcomm Africa, Madam Esther Cobbah, charged women to rise through all odds and boldly develop their talents.
She noted that few women were in leadership positions, and indicated there was the need for women to confront cultural practices, religious and economic barriers that often prevented them from occupying leadership positions. Madam Cobbah challenged the participants to identify problems in their societies and develop solutions that could change situations.
She mentioned maternal and child mortality, poverty, illiteracy, reducing mother-to-child transmission of HIV and AIDS in Africa as challenges that could be confronted if more women would take up leadership positions.
In her Speech, a Former Attorney General, Mrs Betty Mould Iddrisu, said: “Participation of women in leadership is a prerequisite for positive change and development in Africa.” “This form of training is a kind of transformation that will enable women to affect the lives of other people in their societies”, She added.
The Deputy Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Mr John Alexander Ackon, said the training would provide young girls with knowledge that could change issues such as gender inequalities and negative practices, including female genital mutilation, early marriages and illiteracy.
He commended the organisation for making the initiative a wider access to other African countries and said Africa stood the chance of winning the fight against poverty, diseases and other situations “if we as Africans work together to develop a strategic approach to deal with all the problems.”
The Co-Founder of Moremi Initiative, Mr Mawuli Dake, said: “The organisation seeks to empower women and girls to take up leadership roles in their communities to ensure a positive change and development in Africa.”