Thursday, March 24, 2016

Rejection of gender bill: Minister expresses mixed feelings

Minister for Women affairs and Social Development.
Report from Federal Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development. 

Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Senator Aisha Jummai Alhassan has received with mixed feelings, the news of the rejection of the proposed Gender and Equal opportunities Bill, by the Nigerian senate.

According to Senator Alhassan, the bill if passed, would have addressed discriminatory practices against women, especially in the areas of access to education, female entrepreneurship development, participation in governance, decision making and protection against violence, etc. The minister made this statement in New York while attending the “Governance and Women’s Representation: Achieving Agenda 2063”, marking the international women’s day and related activities.
She expressed hope that with the passage of the bill, Nigeria would have made a significant leap in the advancement of women in conformity with the United Nations (UN) Conventions, and other related instruments on the rights and development of women. Senator Alhassan further opined that with due respect to religious and cultural sensibilities, we believe that the bill will be re-presented to the Senate, as soon as all contentious areas are addressed The minister further said that the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development will always, do its best to promote the protection of Nigerian women against violence and all forms of abuses and stereotypes and promote the sustainable development and growth of women. Senator Alhassan stressed that as a nation, we cannot afford to neglect the women who constitute about half of our population, if we are to make any meaningful development, adding that the Gender and Equal opportunities Bill is therefore, crucial to the attainment of sustainable development and growth of the Nigerian women. The minister reiterated that Nigerian women will continue to urge the Nigerian Senate to reconsider its position to ensure a speedy passage of the bill when it is re-presented.

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