Ghana’s first lady Lordina Mahama has appealed to all mothers to join in the fight against child marriage as the world celebrates Mother’s Day today, May 8, 2016.
The Day has been set aside to show appreciation to all mothers across the globe for the crucial role they play in keeping the family together.
Mrs Mahama said mothers deserve a lot of commendation, but have a lot to do when it comes to putting a stop to child marriage.
“As a mother, the practice of child marriage breaks my heart and so must it be to all Mothers. It also negatively affects the future of thousands of young girls across Ghana and beyond.
“I urge all Mothers to support the ‘End Child Marriage’ Campaign and join forces with Governments to end child marriage. Keep your children in school and allow them to climb the educational ladder rather than marrying them off,” Mrs Mahama said in a message to celebrate Mother’s Day.
Below is the full statement:
STATEMENT FROM THE FIRST LADY OF GHANA ON MOTHER’S DAY 2016
There are many special days on the calendar to commemorate unique occasions, but one that is universally acclaimed as truly worthy of celebration is MOTHER’S DAY!
Everyday, mothers play the pivotal role of raising and moulding their children. Mothers also unite families and communities to help build a bright and better future for their children.
I wish on this occasion to salute all mothers for the unconditional love, unlimited patience, forgiveness and selflessness they continue to show to their children and families.
Through the work of the Lordina Foundation, I have travelled the length and breadth of this country and I have come to appreciate the critical role our Mothers play, just to ensure our wellbeing. The best we can do for them, as children and society, is to celebrate this day everyday.
Indeed, Mothers are God’s gift to mankind and today, much of Ghana’s progress is, in no small way, due to the contribution of Mothers to the family, to the community and to the nation.
I ask God to bless all Mothers this day and always.
As we organise events and ceremonies to celebrate them, let us also remember their role in saving dysfunctional families, broken homes and bitter marriages. Thanking them is inadequate for the sacrifices they make every day.
On this occasion of Mothers Day 2016, I wish to encourage Mothers, especially in Ghana and Africa, to participate in the Annual Vaccination Week by ensuring that infants and children receive the requisite free vaccination. We need to collectively prioritise immunisation as a key intervention to reduce child mortality.
As President of the Organisation of African First Ladies Against HIV & AIDS (OAFLA), and together with my colleague First Ladies, we have joined hands to strive to achieve our common vision of “making Africa a continent free from HIV and AIDS, Maternal and Child Mortality, and a place where women and girls are empowered to enjoy equal rights and opportunities.”
We are working to guarantee access and investments in life-saving vaccines for Africa’s mothers, new-borns, children and adolescents.
During the recent 7th Africa Conference on Sexual Health and Rights in Accra, my husband, President John Dramani Mahama launched the ‘Ending Child Marriage’ Campaign.
As a mother, the practice of child marriage breaks my heart and so must it be to all Mothers. It also negatively affects the future of thousands of young girls across Ghana and beyond.
I urge all Mothers to support the ‘End Child Marriage’ Campaign and join forces with Governments to end child marriage. Keep your children in school and allow them to climb the educational ladder rather than marrying them off.
Finally, I wish to entreat our Working Mothers not to abandon the long cherished traditional role of providing services and care for the family at all times despite the challenges that confront the working woman.
H.E. Dr. Nana Lordina Dramani Mahama
First Lady of the Republic of Ghana &
President of the Lordina Foundation