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Defending My People Earned Me A Jail Term And Exile – 81, Former Liberian President Johnson-Sirleaf

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Defending My People Earned Me A Jail Term And Exile – 81, Former Liberian President Johnson-Sirleaf

After a 12-year leadership of Liberia and the history that preceded her regime, former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf says it has made her believe that the consistent application of governance can make a big difference and turn apparently hopeless cases around.
Speaking at the maiden edition of the annual gender equality conference organised by the Kwara State Government, Africa’s first elected female president, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, gave an insight into her tortuous political journey.

Her own political party ended her political career with her expulsion after she had served as her country’s president for 12 years. However, while encouraging both Kwaran women and Nigerian women, Sirleaf said that advocacy for women empowerment should include reforms at various levels.

“I was jailed twice and sent on exile from my own country because I chose to be a resounding voice for the people,” Mrs Johnson-Sirleaf said on Thursday at the maiden edition of the annual gender equality conference organised by the Kwara State Government.

Themed ‘Galvanising the Will to Take Actions on Gender Equality and Women Empowerment’, the event featured as speakers, Mrs Johnson-Sirleaf; United Nations Deputy Secretary-General, Amina Mohammed; and Nigeria’s Minister of Women Affairs, Pauline Tallen, among others.
Speaking on the challenges and opportunities for women in politics in Africa, Mrs Johnson-Sirleaf, 81, took the participants through her journey.

The former Liberian leader said the COVID-19 pandemic was another opportunity for women to display their remarkable leadership role.

“The leadership roles played by women in many countries during the coronavirus have been remarkable and should be celebrated”, she said.
She however frowned at the high rate of domestic violence experienced mostly by women during the pandemic lockdowns.
She called for action and advocacy towards tackling gender violence and inequality, noting that it is only through proper legislation and the quota system that women can get a better deal in politics.

The former president also gave kudos to the Kwara State government for bringing up such an initiative to galvanise support for more inclusion of women in the governance process.

Citynewsng understands that the conference co-hosted by Kwara State governor, AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, and his wife, Olufolake AbdulRazaq, was held virtually.

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