Group Adivses Women To Achieve Equal Future
The President, Medical Women International Association, Dr Eleanor Nwadinobi, has advised women in leadership to work toward achieving an equal future, especially in a Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) world.
She gave the advice in a special interview with The Tide source yesterday in Abuja, as the world celebrates International Women’s Day (IWD) on March 8.
Annually marked around the globe to showcase women’s achievements in the social, economic, cultural and political spheres throughout history and across nations, the IWD is also known as the UN Day for Women’s Rights and International Peace.
Nwadinobi, therefore, explained that the 2021 theme of the day; #ChoosetoChallenge, was apt and necessary for women to join their voices in ensuring equal opportunities, alongside the men counterpart.
She said: “The campaign theme is an opportunity to amplify our voices and draw attention to the need for equal opportunities for women and girls by choosing to challenge existing norms.
“Life is about choices and change happens when we make deliberate and intentional choices to challenge any negative status quo.”
The medical women boss, who expressed concern over non-celebration of women’s achievements, said “women have largely been unrecognised.
“For example, women led the army of frontline workers during the COVID-19 pandemic as healthcare workers, caregivers and community efforts. The International Labour Organisation also noted the nearly 100 million women health workers globally working relentlessly in hospitals and at home, but not recognised.
“The stance for the #choosetochallenge 2021 campaign theme is therefore a raised hand that is emblematic, saying count me in, I am indicating my firm commitment. It is a sign of solidarity and commitment. It is an affirmation to indicate that one is present.”
Nwadinobi said one glaring common challenge that women faced in every part of the world was Gender-Based Violence (GBV), especially sexual violence.
According to her, the types of violence may vary but violence happens everywhere.
She noted that nations with high rates of violence and poor status of women were more likely to engage in armed conflicts, saying “in fact, the most dangerous place to be a woman is everywhere in the world.”
To address violence against women at global level, she maintained that a global treaty be enacted to create a rigorous, legally-binding framework for every nation on earth to undertake evidence-based interventions, catalyse an exponential increase in funding and for the world to monitor progress.
She identified common types of harmful practices in Nigeria to include early and forced marriage, Female Genital Mutilation and harmful widowhood practices.She explained that the 2015 Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP) Act passed into law at the federal level “which provided legal framework for addressing these practices that strip women and girls of their rights and dignity was yet to be domesticated nationwide.
“When domesticated, it would bring perpetrators to book and deter others.”
On inequality between Nigerian men and women, Nwadinobi said the data was abysmally low, adding that “there are several barriers to women’s meaningful participation in decision-making. We need to start with addressing the under representation of women in parliament.
“The barriers are political, socio-cultural and religious. The way out is to ensure a constitution review and to pass the Gender and Equal Opportunities Bill and for political party constitutions to allow for quota and not to be tokenistic in their operations.
“We need to offer women and girls of all ages the same opportunities, rights and freedom as men.
“There should be mutual respect between men and women and the realisation that an aircraft left to fly on one engine can never be at its optimal capacity.”
On what government, Non-Govermental Organisations and ordinary Nigerians should do to assist women and girls to reach their potential, she said government needed to implement deliberate programmes for the development of the female gender.
She added that “civil society grassroots need to work with government to forge sustainable partnerships. Voices of the grassroots need to be heard.
“The innovative, creative and constructive potential of our citizens need to be harnessed for optimum results.”
The medical practitioner, who condemned the current kidnappings in the country, especially that of more than 300 schoolgirls from the boarding house, said it could affect the gains so far recorded in the crusade for girl-child education.
According to her, the way out is to understand and address the root causes of such criminality.
She explained that Nigeria was currently experiencing a youth bulge, “so, there is the need to design more deliberate programmes for youths’ development; the answer to securing the future of Nigeria is in investing in our youth.
“We must appreciate their energy, ingenuity and creativity and provide opportunities for their skills and talents to be harnessed.”
She said women and girls should not be scared of aspiring to the top, but have it at the back of their minds that their dreams were achievable.
“Women do not have to look too far for role models, some women are at the helm of affairs around the globe. We have female presidents and prime ministers in Germany, Bangladesh, Norway and Scotland.
“We also have a group of outstanding Nigerian women as role models who they can look up to.
“On the global scene, Nigeria is blessed with having a Nigerian, Dr Ngozi Okonjo- Iweala as Director-General of the World Trade Organisation, Amina Mohammed as the UN Deputy Secretary-General.
“I am humbled to be able to occupy this space of honour as the first Nigerian President of the Medical Women International Association in its one-hundred-year history.
“Women have what it takes to lead the reconstruction efforts and to bring fresh perspectives into national and global issues.”
She, therefore, commended Nigerian women making giant strides around the globe,
saying “they are a source of pride to every woman and girl out there, and they stand as beacons of light to show that we can break the glass ceiling.”
Lawmaker Charges Politicians On Electoral Promises
A Lawmaker representing Lagos Mainland, Federal House of Representatives, Mr Olanrewaju Oshun, on Saturday charged politicians to fulfil their electoral promises to the masses, to continually gain their trust.
Oshun said this in an interview with The Tide’s source after casting his vote at PU 03, Ward 008, Lagos Mainland Local Government Area, for the Governorship and State House of Assembly Elections in Lagos.
According to him, Nigeria’s politics has changed to an era where electorate expect that only politicians who deliver on their mandate should be voted for.
“At this era, politicians must understand the fact that they need to fulfil their electoral promises and be close to the people.
“The masses are more conscious that it is only politicians who perform well that should earn their vote”, he said.
Oshun expressed optimism that the will of the people would prevail in the elections, having voted for their choices.
On his assessment of the election, he lauded the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for improving on the conduct of the election, compared to the performance of the February 25 Presidential and National Assembly Elections.
According to him, the INEC officials arrived early at most polling units across the state, the Bi-modal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) functioned effectively, while the overall process of the election was seamless.
“There is a great improvement in the conduct of the election, compared to the hitches we had at the last election.
“People have voted and made their opinion known, so it should be counted and let the best candidate win”. he said.
The lawmaker noted that the turnout for the election was impressive.
Oshun said, “one cannot say there is voter apathy as such, as reported in some quarters because people cast their votes in few minutes and left almost immediately.
The source reports that Oshun was re-elected during the Feb. 25 National Assembly Election to represent his constituency.
ICPC Arrests Four Vote-Buyers In Sokoto, Katsina
The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) arrested four vote-buyers in Sokoto and Katsina states during the just-concluded Governorship and State Houses of Assembly elections last Saturday.
In its election monitoring operations across the states of the federation, officers of the anti-corruption agency encountered some vote-buyers at Kauran Miyo Primary School in Bodingo Town of Bodinga Local Government Area of Sokoto State.
The Spokesperson, ICPC, Azuka Ogugua, revealed this on Saturday night in a statement obtained by The Tide source.
She noted that the Sokoto State monitoring team of the commission arrested three male vote-buyers; Mahe Bello, Musa Adamu and Mustapha Mohammed, all of Kauran Miyo Bodinga.
Ogugua said, “Mahe Bello was caught in possession of a cash sum of N38,000, two PVCs, one ATM card and an Infinix phone, while Musa Adamu had CFA228,000 in his possession which was being offered to voters. The third suspect, Mustapha Mohammed, was arrested with some PVCs in his possession”.
According to her, the ICPC monitoring team, however, came under attack while carrying out the arrest of the three vote-buyers.
This was as she noted that an officer of the commission, Rabiu Ibrahim, suffered a head injury from being hit by stones, and has been admitted into a hospital and he is in a stable condition.
She added that the three alleged vote-buyers were kept in the custody of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps before being conveyed to ICPC’s detention facility in Sokoto.
In a related development, the ICPC election monitoring team in Katsina State arrested one Tanimu Tabale for vote-buying at Tashar Yamma Polling Unit in Zango Local Government Area of the State.
Tabale, a 35-year-old man, claimed he was an observer in Makama Polling Unit but was arrested at Tashar Yamma Polling Unit with the sum of N20,000 in different denominations attempting to buy the votes and was apprehended.
Elections: LG Chairman Lauds Officials … Says No Security Breach In Keffi
Chairman of Keffi Local Government Area (LGA), Nasarawa State, Alhaji Muhammad Baba-Shehu, has lauded concerned officials for ensuring the absence of security breach during Saturday’s elections in the area.
Baba-Shehu gave the commendation while speaking with Newsmen shortly after the State’s Governorship and House of Assembly elections in Keffi.
Baba-shehu noted that the success recorded was as a result of the zeal and commitment of security agencies in the area.
According to him, officers of the concerned security agencies worked hard to ensure no one carried out any act that would destabilise the peace being enjoyed in the area.
“So far, as the Chief Security Officer of the area, I have not received any report of any breach in security and that is because our security personnel are up and doing.
“All the security agencies in Keffi LG did what they know best and what was expected of them. They were in every corner of the community”, he said.
Baba-Shehu who stated that the peaceful conduct of the elections in the area was commendable, and lauded the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for ensuring the process met Nigerians’ expectations.
“I also have to commend INEC officials because the electoral materials reached polling units in good time and the election process also started early. So, there was no complaint of delay of accreditation or voting in Keffi”, he said.
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