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Envoy Seeks More Opportunities For Nigerian Women

Nigerian government has been advised to accord women more opportunities in order to contribute meaningfully and sustain the socio-economic and political growth and development of the country. The Republic of Sierra Leone High Commissioner to Ghana, Mrs Frances Anderson, gave the advice in her keynote address during the African Women in Leadership Organization (AWLO) 2020 membership induction ceremony held at the Sheraton Hotel and Towers, Ikeja, Lagos, recently. Anderson who described Nigeria as a blessed country full of opportunities and blessed with intellectuals, stressed an urgent need for women whom she described as positive change agents and catalyst for development to be given opportunity and chance to also assume leadership positions in various areas of human endeavour, saying that Nigerian women she has mingled with and known are sincere, hard-working, productive, accountable and possess ability to impact the society positively. Anderson whose address was titled, 'Creating the Opportunity and Space for Women through Unity and Togetherness', pointed out that, "for centuries, women have fought for their basic rights, ranging from the right to education, to access to quality health care services, to voting rights, to inheritance, to employment and equal pay. The struggle for women's emancipation continues in all spheres of human endeavour. "For so long, we have been marginalized, overlooked and underappreciated, but radical change is in the air and hope continues to stay alive. Anderson who is also the ambassador to Togolese and Burkina Faso Republics, while urging women to soldier up their struggle, said there was need for them to synergize and work together as one so as to achieve their common goal. "As women, asking your government to give you opportunities to contribute to sustain the socio-economic and political development and growth of your country requires sacrifice, commitment and dedication from all of you. You all must co-operate, work, walk together and develop a platform capable enough to attain greater socioeconomic and political powers like your male counterparts, she urged. The keynote speaker acknowledged and commended governments across the African continent for taking active steps to further the cause of women through the promulgation of statues to protect their fundamental human rights and the implementation of programmes to support women's economic and financial independence as well as political liberation and inclusion, urging same governments to do more. In her welcome remark, first lady of the organization, Mrs Eno Attai, while commending women, especially members of the organization who are fellow gender advocates and gender parity campaigners, urged them to remain united, come out bold and strong and speak out against gender-based violence, as well as take a bold step into getting involved in the socio-economic and political environment in the country. "Now that we have recovered ourselves and ready to take responsibility as excellent and women of faith, it is now our place to take rewarding action, support ourselves and work for a better society, knowing quite well that when we women support one another, incredible things happen, she said. In his remark, founder of the organization, Dr. Elisha Attai, who was full of excitement, expressed appreciation and applauded women for rising up, meeting together in friendship and sisterhood to advance a common goal, assured them that their voices have been heard, and since they know and understand what they want, they should boldly go for it. He pledged his organization's unwavering support and commitment to the women he described as phenomenal, saying that the era when it was popularly believed that the place for the women was in the kitchen was over. Attai commended the women for their steadfastness, saying that their struggle would not be in vain. High points of the event was induction of 30 new members, awards and unveiling/ launching of AWLO December 2020 edition magazine; with people, women with highest, from all walks of life in attendance, observing COVID-19 protocols.

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