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Investing in Education can Eradicate Poverty Printable Version PRINTABLE VERSION
by Reama Naco, Fiji Sep 29, 2005
Poverty , Child & Youth Rights   Interviews


I had the opportunity, during the 51st Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) conference that was held at the Sheraton Resort, Nadi here in Fiji in September this year, to interview the Hon. Haja Afsatu Kabba – Opposition Member of Parliament from Sierra Leone.

Haja Afsatu Kabba is a woman who is extremely passionate about eradicating poverty and she a strong believer in the empowerment of women and the girl child.

I was able to do an interview with her and below you will find a story that I wrote. You can also check out my story on the Official Fiji Government website www.fiji.gov.fj

The idea that poverty can be eradicated by raising income levels is a misconception, according to the Hon. Haja Afsatu Kabba – Opposition Member of Parliament in the All People’s Congress from Sierra Leone.

Poverty, she said can be diminished if developed countries invest in education. And she added, the assistance of the CPA and the World Bank in this aspect was needed in order to reduce poverty.

She also raised the point that other things such as political influence, providing safe and adequate shelter and empowering women and children needed to be looked at in order to eradicate poverty. The former Minister for Lands, Housing and Country in 1998 and former Minister for Works, Energy and Power in 1996, before the civil war, Hon. Kabba said that there was a need to raise productivity through education particularly for youths, women and children.

Hon. Kabba who also attended a workshop on the Millennium Development Goal 1 – Eradicate Extreme Poverty and Hunger during the CPA conference, said that in Sierra Leone, the poverty level is about 70% affecting the age group 15-24 years old.

And this, Hon Kabba said, is the most active age group at that poverty level.

“What do you expect at this age, you would expect violence, humanitarian crisis, conflicts and sexual trafficking of young girls?

“Some families have no qualms about sending their girls into the sex trade, because they need the money. Poverty can be reduced only if developed countries invest in the people, in their human resource,” she stressed.

With education, Hon. Kabba said people will be able to make informed and wise choices and attain that exquisite knowledge to be able to analyze what is good and what is bad.

And she believes that educating women will empower them to make a difference in raising poverty levels.

“I feel sorry for girls who are given less priority in their homes over the boys. If the parents are poor, it’s the boys who are given the opportunity to further their education and the not the girls,” she said.

Hon. Kabba said she longs for the day when girls are born and not looked upon as a curse. “I long for the day when parents have a baby girl; they will see it as a blessing rather than a burden.”

And she added, the hand that rocks the cradle will make the world better.

In Sierra Leone, Hon. Kabba works a lot with women at the grassroots level to hear them out and see ways in which she can assist them. She also conducts workshops with these women in the hope of empowering them for the future.



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Reama Naco

Bula vinaka (this is hello in Fijian)...my name is Reama Naco and I am 26 years old. I was introduced to Taking IT Global by a friend, Lice Movono and so far i have really found this site, enlightening, interesting and i must say exciting!!! Exciting because i can also express my views, opinions of what is happening globally, regionally (Pacific) and locally (my home country)...Exciting because I can also read what other young people have to say. I work as an Information Officer for the Government of Fiji and have skills in writing, doing research and also in uploading websites. I like contending with regional issues in the Pacific that is, looking at things like the draft Pacific Plan, regional agreements such as the Pacific Islands Countries Trade Agreement (PICTA) and the Pacific Islands Countries Economic Relations (PACER) and on the global level as well, everything to do in ICT, Politics and in the economic and social fields as well - and most importantly, the advancement of women and children both globally and locally!! Stay tuned...

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Tasnim Jannat | Jan 8th, 2007
All governments are committed for the well being of their people regardless of their sex,age and status. One can find discrimination and neglect to the women in most countries of the world.Education and judicious treatment for the females must be the inbuilt policy for all governments.Since females were neglected in the past, enhanced investments for the betterment of women may be considered in all states.Investment from outside is usually a whitewash and politically motivated initiative.The sovereign states can not rely upon such unsustainable programs which are funded by the so-called rich or developed countries.SO,THE POWER OF EACH NATION OR GOVERNMENT SHOULD BE GIVEN THE TOPMOST PRIORITY FOR DESIGNING AND IMPLEMENTING ALL PROGRAMS FOR THE DEVELOPMENT AND EMPOWERMENT OF WOMEN.

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