Vice-President (Prof.) Yemi Osinbajo, SAN

Why women’s voices are significant in national development: Osinbajo

*Nigerian Vice-President (Prof.) Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, restates ‘no country in the world has attained economic development without giving equal rights and opportunities to women’

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

Vice-President (Prof.) Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, has said it is important for the voices of women, are major contributors to national development, to be heard and for them to participate more actively in the formulation of policies in diverse sectors of the Nigerian economy.

ConsumerConnect reports Prof. Osinbajo stated this at the weekend when he received a delegation of Jam’iyyar Matan Arewa, the association of women in Northern Nigeria, at the Presidential Villa, in Abuja, FCT.

Jam’iyyar Matan Arewa also presented the Vice-President with the Association’s Icon/Humanitarian Award, in recognition of Osinbajo’s support to the less-privileged in society, and especially children orphaned by the Boko Haram insurgency in the North East, particularly through the North-East Children’s Trust.

The Trust is an initiative championed by the Nigeerian Vice-President, which established The Learning Centre, in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.

In his remarks when appreciating the women group for the award, Osinabjo said: “It is important that your voices are heard very clearly, it is an economic issue. No country in the world has attained economic development without giving equal opportunities to women.

“Every wealthy nation in the world that has attained greatness has done so because women in that nation were accorded equal rights and opportunities.”

He also urged for more collaboration between the government and similar private, civil society organisations in addressing issues related to the welfare of children and girl-child education, among others.

“It is important that the private sector and civil society organisations such as yours, focused on women, participate more actively in developing policies because you are right there, so it is important to collaborate more,” the Vice-President stated.

Osinbajo also noted the proposed 35 percent affirmative action for women to be given elective and appointive positions in government as he said “there is a need for women to be properly recognised and given the rights in society.”

Prof. Osinbajo highlighted the work being done by the At-Risk Children Programme, ARC-P, a Federal Government-led initiative in addressing the challenges faced by the vulnerable in society, especially children and young people, nationwide.

The ARC-P is led by Mrs Maryam Uwais, the Special Adviser to the President on Social Investments.

Responding at the forum, Hajiya Rabi Musa Saulawa, President of Jam’iyyar Matan Arewa and leader of the delegation, said the association of Northern women embraces all women in the Northern region regardless of their tribal and religious differences.

Hajiya Saulawa recalled the group was founded in 1963 to unite Northern women and improve their standard of living socially and economically, and has branches in all the 19 Northern States and the FCT.

Appreciating the VP for his dedication and commitment to humanitarian causes such as the orphans in the North-East, she stated: “This is the kind of leadership our nation deserves, where region, tribe or religion does not dictate the direction of government policies and initiatives.

“It is as a result of this commitment and dedication that Jam’iyyar Matan Arewa, an institution that looks after orphans, has also decided to honour His Excellency with the JMA humanitarian award.”

Saulawa also acknowledged the humanitarian work of the wife of the Vice-President, as she prayed for God’s blessings on the VP and his family.

President of Jam’iyyar Matan Arewa added: “Your Excellency, Northern women and children are indebted to you for taking care of our children.

“All we can do is to pray for you that the Almighty God will bless you and your family abundantly.”

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