Minister of Women Affairs, Mrs Pauline Tallen, on Thursday in Abuja, said that Nigeria would develop more effectively with gender equality.
Tallen stated this at an event marking the 2022 International Women’s Day, organised by Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI).
The event was with the theme: “Changing Climates: Equality Today for a Sustainable Tomorrow.’’
The minister called for concerted efforts at fighting gender inequality in Nigeria, saying that it was not a mistake that God created both gender to complement each other.
“We can only develop more effectively when we have gender equality.
“You cannot say that the country will move forward when over 50 per cent is one gender is controlling everything. It means we are standing on one leg,’’ Tallen said.
While decrying the rejection of the bills seeking gender equality by the National Assembly, the minister appealed to the lawmakers to have a change of mindset.
“On March 8, there was a rethink by the lower house, and by the grace of God, the upper house will join them to have a rethink.
“We can’t be angry with them because we can’t throw away the baby with the bathwater,’’ she said.
Tallen, however, appealed to women to always support their partners, urging men to also ensure that their wives were always happy.
This, according to her, will guarantee happy home, happy society and a prosperous Nigeria.
“Women remain a strong force to reckon with and no one can take away our joy. So, I urge Nigerian women to remain focused, resilient and determined in contributing to nation building,’’ Tallen said.
Earlier, President of ACCI, Dr Al-Mujtaba Abubakar, solicited for support for women to grow in their businesses and in other endeavours.
Represented by Chief Emeka Obegolu, First Deputy Vice- President of ACCI, Abubakar identified difficulty in accessing funds and markets as major challenges facing women entrepreneurship.
He said, “The role of women in economic development of any nation cannot be over-emphasised. So, we need to support the women to grow.’’
On her part, the Vice-President, Women Development and Gender Matters, ACCI, Mrs Roseline Nwosu, called for increased efforts in identifying challenges being faced by women entrepreneurs and proffer solutions.
Nwosu, who pointed out the need to promote an all-inclusive business environment, urged women to explore the opportunities provided by ACCI to grow their businesses.