The Board Diversity Index, a new report released by the Boardroom Africa, shows that women are still under-represented in boardrooms of companies listed in Ghana.
The report released in collaboration with the Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE) showed that, out of the 37 companies, women hold only 23 percent of board seats and 24 percent of non-executive director seats.
According to the 2020 Board Diversity Index, the most common role held by 72 percent of women across most of these companies is the position of corporate secretary.
However, these figures represent a three percent increase in board seats held by women and a four percent increase in non-executive director seats held by women from 2019.
Key sectors assessed in the 2020 Board Diversity Index include agriculture and agribusiness, financial services, automobile, advertising and communications, education, energy, consumer goods, and food and beverage. Amongst these sectors, consumer goods leads with respect to the percentage of companies in the consumer goods sector with more than 30 percent female directors.
However, in terms of the aggregate number of women, the financial services sector outperforms all sectors as 38 percent of all female directors in GSE-listed companies represented in the financial services sector.
The report further revealed that the higher the number of female non-executive directors, the higher the likelihood of females in executive positions. Also, companies with 30 percent or more female non-executive directors are six percent more likely to have a female chairperson, eight percent more likely to have a female Chief Executive Officer (CEO) or Managing Director (MD) and 15 percent more likely to have a female Chief Operating Officer (COO).
Commenting on the methodology used for the survey, Marcia Ashong, Founder and CEO of The Boardroom Africa said, “The Boardroom Africa has undertaken a robust analysis of boardroom gender diversity in Ghana and 11 other African states over the past three years by analyzing board composition through public declarations of executives and officers.”
“This year, we’re delighted to count the Ghana Stock Exchange as a partner that has a clear understanding of the strong link between gender diversity and good corporate governance,” she said.
Reviewing the significance of the 2020 Board Diversity Index, Abena Amoah, Deputy Managing Director of the Ghana Stock Exchange, said, “good corporate governance helps firms improve performance, drive growth and manage risk. To be truly effective, a board requires a diversity of skills and perspectives.”
“The Board Diversity Index shows that many GSE-listed companies are true gender diversity champions, but that there is still much work to be done.”