The UN Women Country Representative to Liberia, Marie Goreth-Nizigama says they are passionate about ensuring that women and girls are protected from all forms of violence and that they are not subjected to cultural norms and practices that affect their development.
“We remain steadfast in ensuring that traditional leaders are supported and worked with to bring Liberia on par with other global nations who have abolished harmful practices that hamper the growth and development of women and girls,” she said.
Madam Goreth-Nizigama encourages traditional leaders in the country to prioritize education, empowerment, health and well-being of every female as they too are the pillars of the home and the society.
The UN Women special envoy further said they respect and appreciate the culture and traditions of Liberia and would want to see its best practices upheld.
She said they acknowledge the custodians of the Liberian culture and traditions, adding that it is their desire to see the knowledge, morals, values, skills and talents of their grandmothers passed down from one generation to the next.
But we also want to ensure that while these best practices are being passed on, women and girls can develop to their full potential and not be subjected to being child brides and mothers or to living with lifetime health implications that might even lead to death.
The UN Women boss at the same time said the fight to end all forms of violence against women and girls cannot be won without their powerful allies, noting the traditional Fathers and Mothers.
She told the chiefs and elders that they are the custodians of the Liberian culture, customs, traditions and values and they are very influential in convincing their community members to accept or adopt new ways, approaches, behaviors and attitudes that protect women and girls from violence.
“All of us are part of a global village where modernization and technology are slowly taking over our cultural and traditional values and practices. Traditional leaders need to be prepared for the changes and modernization of our culture and think critically on how they can preserve the positive aspects of our culture so that it is not lost,” Madam Marie Goreth-Nizigama stressed.