Jani K. Jallah-Kollie: ‘True Democracy Cannot Be Achieved Without Women’

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By Leticia Afecia

A champion of women’s rights in Liberia, Janie Jallah-Kollie has termed as a mockery to women’s participation in politics and decision making in Liberia the recent decision of the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) not to feature a female candidate for the December 8, midterm senatorial elections.

Mrs. Jallah-Kollie called on President George Weah as ‘feminist in-Chief’ to encourage and support women in political decisions in his ruling political establishment.

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“True democracy cannot be achieved without a female and that is based on countless research that has been conducted,” Jani said.

Speaking on the “diaspora talk” on KMTV, she argued that there are qualified and influential women in the ruling establishment who must be given a chance to represent the party at the level of the national legislature where major decisions are made.

She said when women are elected at the national legislature they will truly represent the interest of women in the country.

“Imaging having 50 percent of your people completely out of your decision. The President of the Republic of Liberia has continuously said to us that he’s a true champion of the people and that includes women, terming him as Liberia feminist in-chief.”

Expressing her disappointment, the women’s advocate said “what’s going to happen 2023? Is this a glimpse of what we are going to expect not having a single female to the table? In other words, this did not bring to life what the Liberia feminist in-chief talks about.”

She also warned the opposition community to promote women into politics and select them to contest in the upcoming senatorial seats for their party.

She said if oppositions omit women out of the process it will signal out that Liberia’s democracy is not reflective at the level of the national legislature, where they craft major policies and laws.

According to the World Bank, only one out of nine seats in the legislature is held by women and the country ranks 40th out of 54 African countries for the number of women in parliament, and 149th out of 191 worldwide.

Jani said there are several competent women in political parties who the chance should be given to run on the tickets political parties in the pending elections.

“These are women who have gone and said I want to run but obviously if you look at the research on women in politics they will tell you that they are at a disadvantage and building consensus with other men is also a huge challenge for them.”

Jani said women are only relied on for mobilization but the chance is not given them to run for elected positions, adding that it is discouraging for the country’s democracy.