Segun Awofadeji in Gombe
The UN Women Peace and Security Programme Nigeria has advocated the passage of the Gender Equal Opportunities for All Persons bill in Gombe state.
The Gender Technical Adviser for UN Women Peace and Security Gombe State, Rhoda Zira Dia, made the call at the opening ceremony of a two-day retreat engagement meeting with members of the Gombe state Executive Council on Gender for Equal Opportunities for All bill, held at the Command Guest House, Bauchi, recently.
The meeting was funded by the European Union (EU) and implemented by UN Women in partnership with UNICEF and the state ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development.
Dia said the goal of the programme was to strengthen the engagement of women in peace and security at all levels of decision-making.
According to her, “It seeks to strengthen women roles in conflict prevention, peace-making and peace building. It also seeks to mitigate the impact of conflict upon women and girls including gender-based violence; and thirdly to enhance a conducive environment for the implementation of the United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325 and monitoring of gender equality commitment in the country.”
Dia stressed that these are the reasons for advocacy of legislation to enable women access public decision-making positions and strengthen their skills in mediation, negotiations and early warning.
The UN Women Technical Adviser said “that is why we brought the executive to review and incorporate views for possible passing of the bill into law in the state.”
In her remarks, Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Mrs. Rabi Daniel said, already Gombe state had signed a Letter of Agreement with the UN Women to promote women engagement in peace and security issues in the state.
Daniel, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Ishiaku Mohammed, said under the partnership bill committee was set up for gender and equal opportunities for all persons with members from MDAs, CSOs, Media, religious and traditional institutions with the aim to draft a bill that will reflect the culture, religions, capabilities and resources of the people of Gombe state.
She however urged the participants to come up with positive contributions to humanity, bearing in mind the fact that women have been relegated to the background right from family setting down to the political arena.
The issue of gender equality and equity is one of the popular goals under the new global 17 Sustainable Development Goals, which were adopted by over 190 UN member-countries in September 2015 at the landmark 70th General Assembly (UNGA), which took place in New York, USA.