Monday, July 1, 2019 6:12 pm
The United Nations (UN) Resident Coordinator, Mr Edward Kallon has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to consider appointment of competent women into his next cabinet.
Kallon made the call in Abuja on Monday at the official inauguration of the Nigeria Chapter of the African Women Leaders Network (AWLM), which was done in collaboration with UN Women, African Union (AU) and Embassy of Germany.
“I call on President Buhari in this moment of making final decision on the cabinet in this second term that he should consider placing competent women in high level positions.
“Women deserve the chance to start building better future for their children and they have the strength to do it; we trust them.”
He said that in Nigeria “almost 50 per cent of the population comprises women; so they have the right to participate in governance and to lead governance.
He said that women’s rights advocacy around the world had been at the forefront of ending violence against them, advancing their participation nationally and globally as well as securing relevant legislation and policy for gender equality.
According to him, without gender equality there will not be meaningful development in the country.
“Here in Nigeria, we can point clear examples of the powerful impact of women mobiliation around a common cause, from `Bring Back our Girls’ campaign to the ongoing mobilisation of women across party line to strategise to end the ongoing marginalisation of women in elected political office.
“In spite of the well documented positive impact of women and women’s organisations, progress on women’s participation and leadership in politics and peace processes is still lagging.
“The evidence linking women’s participation and leadership with peace and development is convincing and well known, but there is a significant gap between what we know and what we do’’.
Kallon said that the network would act as a powerful accountability and advocacy tool for the women of Nigeria towards realising national development goals and the SDGs.
“The 2030 agenda for sustainable development is our blueprint to create resilient, stable societies and to address the root causes of violence of all kinds.
“This meets a strong focus on inclusion with a special emphasis on mainstreaming women’s rights and gender equality across our development work.
“It also means empowering women’s movements and network to advocate for and hold member states to account on commitments towards the 2030,’’ Kallon added.
The UN Women Representative to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Ms. Comfort Lamptey, said that the network was set up in 2017 as a regional platform in Africa to strengthen women’s networks across sectors and generations.
She said that AWLN would also support realisation of the big development agendas on the continent, namely the AU Agenda 2063 and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (Agenda 2030).
Lamptey said that so far six national networks have been formed in CAR, DRC, Cameroon, Congo Brazzaville, Seychelles and Sierra Leone with additional 20 more planned to be launched within a year, adding that Nigeria is the seventh network to be launched.
The Country Representative, African Union, Dr Tunji Asaolu said that AWLN Nigeria was a global initiative aimed at building, strengthening and enhancing women leadership to play active role in African’s transformation in line with the aspiration of Agenda 2063 and the SDGs.
He said that the network would change the story to a level where our leaders would begin to see women as resources.
Also, as those who could take center stage in decision making not only in Africa but in the world affairs.
Vice President, ECOWAS, Finds Koroma said that women have not recognise and have not been recognised in the role they played in bringing peace to our continent.
She said that African women played various major role in the world peace, adding that women could reach higher height through this network.
The German Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Bernhard Schlagheck, said that the issue for women empowerment had been settled long before now, adding that it is time to translate the women related policies into practical