The Women Situation Room (WSR) on Friday was a scene of exhilaration when several Eminent Women of the WSR from Sisterly African Countries were recognized and awarded for their contribution to peace-building and women empowerment in their respective countries.
The honorees, who have converged in Liberia to support their fellow Eminent Women of Liberia in ensuring, through the Women's Situation Room, that there are nonviolent elections in Liberia.
The event was held at the Secretariat office of the Women's Situation Room in Monrovia, Liberia and was attended by notable individuals, including Her Excellency Josephine Nkrumah, ECOWAS Ambassador to Liberia, and His Excellency Kingford Amoako, Ghana's Ambassador to Liberia.
During the ceremony, several Eminent Women were recognized and awarded the prestigious Judge Emma Shannon Walser Medal for their outstanding contributions to peace building across the African Continent. The Judge Emma Shannon Walser Medal represents the values of rule of law, good governance, and patriotism.
The recipients of the awards included Dr. Grace Ongile of Kenya, Oduka-Ochan Mary Achan of Uganda, Hon. Matlhohonolofatso Tsepang Mosena of Lesotho, and Hon. Mary Chinery Hesse of Ghana, among others. These women have made significant contributions to their respective countries and have played crucial roles in promoting peace and women's rights.
Olubanke King-Akerele, the Chair of the Board of the Angie Brooks International Centre (ABIC), expressed the importance of honoring these Eminent Women for their remarkable contributions to the continent, especially during the critical period of elections in Liberia.
Judge Emma Shannon Walser, after whom the medal is named, was described by Cllr. Frances Johnson Allison, former Chief Justice of Liberia, as an enterprising and effective woman who served as the First Circuit Court Judge in Montserrado County. She was known for her commitment to peace and women's rights.
In her remarks, Cllr. Yvette Chesson-Wureh, Establishment Coordinator of Angie Brooks International Centre and Initiator of the Women's Situation Room, highlighted the achievements of the Eminent Women and their impact on the lives of women in Africa. She emphasized the importance of their work in moving the continent forward and inspiring others to contribute positively to their societies.
"We have with us the Eminent Women of Africa who have come to support their sisters Eminent Women of Liberia as we conduct the Women's Situation Room to make sure that we have stable and nonviolent elections in Liberia", she said.
Josephine Nkrumah, ECOWAS Ambassador to Liberia, commended the Eminent Women for their exemplary role on the continent and encouraged the inclusion of more young women in the Women's Situation Room. She believed that their involvement would inspire and contribute to the peace of Africa, elevating the continent to a prominent position in global affairs.
"Your work is far from over and the struggle to see women rise is not going to end anytime soon. We must not forget that the people we are supposed to be talking to are the men. We need to bring the men to the table for them to appreciate, understand and become partners to us to push the agenda of women forward", said Nkrumah.
Kingford Amoako, Ambassador of Ghana to Liberia, expressed his appreciation for the work of the Eminent Women, which has had a significant impact on Africa. He called for greater awareness of the Women's Situation Room peace-building initiative, particularly among the youth and opinion leaders, to ensure broad participation.
Judge Emma Shannon Walser, the first woman circuit court judge in Liberia, was born in Maryland County in 1931. She had a distinguished legal career and was highly regarded as a progressive and liberal judge in the 1970s. Her commitment to justice and women's rights left a lasting legacy.
Overall, the event at the Women Situation Room was a moment of celebration and recognition for the Eminent Women who have made extraordinary contributions to peace building in Africa. Their efforts continue to inspire and pave the way for a more equitable and peaceful continent.