WIMBIZ Case For Greater Women’s Inclusiveness At All Levels Of National Life
If Nigeria is to become an economic powerhouse, then the unique talents, skills, knowledge and abilities of a 100% of its human resources in the loose categories of men, women and youths must be applied, and all individuals empowered to play their full roles. Females are said to account for 50 – 52% of Nigeria’s over 140 million population (if estimates are to be believed). Nigeria is yet to capitalize on its female assets, an intrinsic necessity for the development of our country.
The 2014 National Conference would not have fully achieved its purpose if this situation is not redressed. Women must be allowed to make their contributions to nation building in a significant way. This is not about sentiment; there is an established business case for gender parity and the inclusion of women in all areas of national life, whether in the private or public sector. Gender parity simply means equal opportunities, and allows the talents of both men and women to be used. Research has shown that companies with women on their Boards outperform those with only men, because both genders complement each other and bring the best of what they have into joint endeavours. The Gender issue in Nigeria provokes unending rhetoric but insufficient action.
This is nowhere more evident than with the President’s Gender policy of 35% of women to be appointed into Federal and State Government positions. This has not been implemented in many States. Indeed, the national average for the representation of women in all appointed offices in Nigeria is 12.96%, representing under 50% of the 35% policy! This figure ranges from 0% in some States to 30% in only Ogun State!
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