Otiko Djaba
Otiko Djaba

Madam Otiko Afisah Djaba, the Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, has urged women to celebrate their successes and make them memorable.

She said women needed to deal with the challenges of their profession and create a balance in their work-life.

“Do not beat yourselves up if every day is not as satisfying as you desire,” Madam Djaba said in a speech read on her behalf during a Breakfast Meeting and Women in Business Networking programme organised by the Canada Ghana Chamber of Commerce (CGCC).

The Meeting, on the theme: “Maintaining a Work-Life Balance,” was opened by Ms Heather Anne Cameron, the Canadian High Commissioner to Ghana.

It brought together women entrepreneurs, chief executive officers and captains of industries among others.

“Women are more likely to be praised for being good wives and mothers as against being go-getters at their jobs because that is the way society has socialised us,” she said.

“The dilemma for the business woman is whether to sacrifice work for the family or the family for work. In each situation, there are consequences for the woman and her family,” the Minister said.

Madam Djaba explained that neglecting the family might lead to women missing key milestones in the development of their children while too much concentration on family life may also adversely affect their businesses or career development.

She said striking a balance was, therefore, critical to ensuring success in the business and personal lives.

Madam Djaba said as business women there was the need for them to build a strong network of support to assist each other.

“We need to have strong and competent women within our networks to count on during difficult times. Within our families, we need people to support us by taking on some responsibilities to reduce the burden and stress from household chores,” she said.

“Similarly, we need supportive partners, husbands and fathers to take on some extra responsibilities at home to allow more time for women in business to attend to urgent requirements at their work,” Madam Djaba said.

She said the Ghana Club 100 recently recognised two women: Mrs Happy Dzitse Forson of McOttley Capital Ltd, and Madam Patience Akyianu of Barclays Bank in the top 20 Chief Executive Officers.

Furthermore, women had been pioneers in setting up successful businesses, which they left as legacies for their families and these include Madam Esme Siriboe, who established the Morning Star School, and Madam Esther Ocloo, Founder of the Nkulenu Industry Limited.

“We cannot talk about women in business without mentioning entrepreneurs of small and medium scale businesses in our markets. These women are key economic providers for their families and play an important role in the economic growth of this country,” Madam Djaba said.

Mr Jonathan Ane, the President of CGCC, advised women to take good care of their health as “health is wealth”.

He urged them to make a conscious effort to consider how much attention to give to their health adding; “This starts by recognising that as a healthy person you can do a lot and as a healthy person you can discharge your responsibilities better,” he said.

Mr Ane called for women empowerment since their contributions towards the nation’s socioeconomic development could not be overemphasised.

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