The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Sustainable Development Goals (SSAP-SDGs), Princess Adejoke Orelope Adefurile has made a call to redouble efforts in working towards attaining gender equality to achieve a wide range of the objectives of the SDGs, she made this call while presenting her keynote address at the 2019 biennial conference of the centre for Gender and social policy studies at Obafemi Awolowo University Ile-Ife, Osun State recently
The SSAP-SDGs said, given the positive roles Women play in the society, Gender equality would promote economic growth, labour productivity to reducing poverty and enhancing human capital through education and health to attaining food security, addressing climate change impacts and ensuring more peaceful and inclusive communities,
She lauded the Federal Government efforts in ensuring Gender Equality and Women empowerment pointing that, a number of initiatives and programmes are put in place to address Gender imbalance in line with international conventions and commitment such as; The National Gender Policy, which focus on Gender mainstreaming, Women empowerment and eliminating discriminating practices harmful to Women, implementation of the convention on Elimination of all forms Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).
Others she said are; financial inclusion intervention programmes through the Central Bank of Nigeria, Small and Medium Enterprise Development Fund for Women owned enterprises, Bank of Agriculture, HE for SHE program on Gender equality which break cultural barriers to Gender equality and identifies male ambassadors to champion the gender equality awareness amongst many others.
Princess Adejoke stated that, agenda 2030 for sustainable development places Gender equality and the empowerment of Women at the centre of its implementation with a stand alone goal on Gender Equality and the empowerment of Women and girls adding that the SDGs presents an unprecedented opportunity to transform the lives of Women and Girls and to catalyse progress towards sustainable development in all its dimensions, economic, social and environmental.
She pointed out that, in the United Nations Women SDGs Report, “Turning promises into Action, Gender equality in the 2030 agenda for sustainable development” launched in 2018, stated that, about 122 women aged 25-34 live in extreme poverty for every 100 Men of the same age group globally, with the sub-Saharan Africa having the highest rate and prevalence of food insecurity and maternal mortality ratio put at 556 deaths per 100,000 live births in the region, making it the highest and accounting for two-third of all maternal deaths globally each year.
She commended the intervention of the Present Administration of President Muhammed Buhari, and hope that, all hands are on deck to address the pressing Gender inequality to achieve goals 5, 8 and 10.
The SSAP was represented by Pharm. Hamza Yahaya, Director, Sector SDGs.