Former Anambra State Governor Peter Obi has described women’s contributions to society as essential to development.
By Emma Ogbuehi
In his message on the occasion of International Women’s Day 2022, Obi explained that beyond the stability of homes, which are the foundation of society, women play an important role in development, stability and the progress of nations.
Obi noted that International Women’s Day provides an opportunity for the world to celebrate the social, economic and political contributions and achievements of women.
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He said that many women have excelled in many professions even on a global level, adding that success is not gender specific but open to all as evidenced by many women who have gained global recognition through their contributions to society.
He argued that with adequate economic empowerment in the form of access to good education, proper health care and poverty reduction, women will be able to contribute more to society.
He cited the example of the experience of Bangladesh, a nation comparable to Nigeria. He explained that 20 years ago, Bangladesh launched positive policies to help increase women’s participation in politics and the economy, with a specific number of seats reserved for women in Parliament and in other other constitutional bodies.
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“The current and longest serving Prime Minister of Bangladesh is a woman. Their Leader of the Opposition is a woman. The President of the unicameral Parliament is a woman. The leader and deputy leader of Parliament are both women. Economically, most workers in Bangladesh’s garment industry, which accounts for about 75% of the country’s export earnings, are mostly women.
“Several studies of International Transparency also showed that women are less likely to be corrupt than men when in leadership positions. Higher levels of female participation in public office are associated with lower levels of corruption,” Obi observed.
He further called for greater participation of women in nation building, saying that with them, Nigeria will achieve and sustain the much desired national development.