Group re-echoes gender equality for political offices
A group, Strategies To Achieve Gender Equality (STAGE) For Women Coalition Project, has re-echoed the need to integrate female aspirants willing to contest for positions in all elections, ahead of the 2019 general elections.
At a press conference in collaboration with Women Entrepreneurs Association of Nigeria (WEAN) and Women’s Optimum Development Foundation (WODEF) in Lagos, Executive Director of WEAN, who doubles as co-chair, of STAGE, Dr. Angela Daniel, emphasised the need for women to actively participate in Nigeria’s political, economic and social realms from the 2019 political dispensation.
‘‘The project was conceived to promote gender equality in leadership roles between men and women, promote women support for prospective leaders, reaching out to a society where women and girls are treated with respect and dignity, have equal opportunities to develop and activate their leadership abilities, and the level of poverty and socio political vulnerability among women and girls at its barest minimum., religion or social status.
‘’Out of 448 available positions in Lagos State councils, which has 392 Councillorship positions and 57 local councils, only 54 women have submitted forms from the five political parties with elective positions in Lagos,” she said.
Daniel expressed concern on gender equality in political participation, and leadership roles for women and men to enjoy equal rights and opportunities, equal visibility, and empowerment, in a way that the behaviour, aspirations, potentials, contributions, and the needs of women and men are equally valued and favoured.
“Gender equality is a matter of human rights and a condition for social justice, a necessary and fundamental prerequisite for equality in political decision making, sustainable development and peace.’’
She said the coalition is a women’s organisation bringing women together to identify with each other, speak with one voice and work collectively, working together to achieve gender equality in leadership roles, nation’s governance structures, irrespective of ethnicity.
Speaking further she said the coalition is an NGO comprising 12 steering committee members represented.
Daniel added that agenda for the campaign includes the STAGE for Women 2019 project, Grooming Girls For Leadership Roles On the Platform of WEAN 3bs Group in Secondary Schools, and the National Secondary Schools Summer Project (NSSSP).
She urged political parties and other stakeholders to effect necessary changes and policies where necessary, to allow more women participate in the forthcoming Local Government election in the state.
Other steering committee members that graced the event include the International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), Barrister Phil Nweji, also the Executive Director of Gender and Child Care Advancement Initiatives (G-CCAI), Initiatives For Sustaining Gender Empowerment (ISGEM), Mrs Hilda Nwanekwu, Pastor Mrs Stephanie Nwannmah, President of Tehila Women and Youths Empowerment Foundation (TWYEF), Mrs Obioma Agoziem, Executive Director of the Centre For Corrections and Human Development (CCHD).