2016 has been a very dramatic year for women who were detained without trial or have their husbands detained without trial. The servicewomen in immigration and army are no exception.
The sudden ‘commandment’ from the executive for women in the public service to wear head ties raised questions as to whether holding public office by women had any significance in their status.
Patriarchy was made as evident as noon day when women grumbled and complained as they obeyed the dictates of the executive. Eventually, the ‘commandment’ was lifted as a sign of benevolence as if women had no right or freedom to choose how they are to look.
One would have thought that with the existence of a women’s federation, no law or public service regulation would be put in place without consultation with women leaders. The fact that executive orders are given overnight to the surprise of women occupying the highest office in the land after the president and speaker of the national assembly confirms that women liberation is still a matter of tokenism rather than a reality.
The women of the Gambia should therefore take stock to determine what they really need to do to put to an end patriarchal despotism in The Gambia.