Women's Issues In Guyana

Eight women honoured on International Women’s Day

Posted in Activism,Education,Gender Equality by wiig on March 10, 2008
Tags: , , ,

Kaieteur News – March 10, 2008

NEW AMSTERDAM, BERBICE – Some ordinary women who made history right here in Guyana were praised on Friday when Minister of Health, Dr. Leslie Ramsammy, addressed a gathering to mark International Women’s Day.

Those recognized this year were Hazel Shepherd of the Guyana Police Force; Eileen James of the Regional Democratic Council; retired Matron P. Kumar; Sharda Persaud of Guyanese Women in Development; retired Matron Marilyn La Rose; Terry Davis of the Public Health; Mayon Persaud of the National Communications Network; and Rose Dos Santos for her contribution to the education sector.

The venue was the New Amsterdam Hospital. Denise Dias was also recognised for her role in making persons more road safety conscious. Her mission started when her daughter, Alicea Gouveia, was killed on the roadway by a drunken driver a few years ago.

Former President Janet Jagan is another icon; she made a name for herself for her contribution through the 1940s and 1950s and many years thereafter.

Outside of Guyana, there is Aung Sang Sui Kui of Myanmar, formerly Burma, who on July 20, 1989 was placed under house arrest without charge or trial, because she dared to speak out due to her courage and high ideals. Though released six years later, her movements were still restricted. Minister Ramsammy asked that her work be enshrined in the minds of young people.

The circumstances in Darfur, Western Sudan, which began in February 2003, were highlighted. Ethnic and tribal conflicts led to this genocide, which left thousands dead and millions of people displaced. Minister Ramsammy said, “We in Guyana must unite and say Darfur would never happen to us.”

He spoke about genital mutilation in various parts of the world. “People must advocate to bring these dehumanising acts to an end.”
The Minister pointed out that too many women and children are being deprived of an education across the world. Speaking of unequal impact, he touched on HIV/AIDS, where in Africa more than 60 percent of those living with or who may have died from it are women.

Human Papilloma virus (HPV) is another unequal partner. He called on persons to use International Women’s Day to commit themselves to match their words with their actions, since there seems to be severed connections between the two.

The event to mark International Women’s Day was organized by the Region Six Health Authority in conjunction with the Women’s Affairs Committee in Region Six.

Region Six Education Officer Shafiran Bhajan, in pointing out the genesis of the day, spoke of the centuries-old struggle for women to be placed on equal footing with men.

According to Mrs. Bhajan, on February 28, 1909, in keeping with a declaration made by the Socialist Party of America, the first National Women’s Day was observed in the United States.

International Women’s Day, which was commemorated by the United Nations on March 8, 1977, is designated a national holiday in many countries.

Chairman of the Region Six Health Authority, David Armogan, in saluting women, said even though there has been much change in terms of development for women, a lot more can be done.


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