Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Hajiya Zainab Maina, has called on delegates to the ongoing national conference to support initiatives that will bring issues on women and girls to the front-burner during the conference.
Mrs Maina, who made this call yesterday in Abuja at an interactive session with female delegates to the conference, said the female gender were strategic in the development of any nation.
“Our country cannot become great without the active contribution its women folk. I therefore urge the leadership and delegates to the conference to support initiatives that will mainstream issues of women and girls.
“I would particularly want them to align with the national gender policy and its outcomes as a strategy for addressing some of the challenges that affect women and girls in Nigeria.
“The national conference, we hope, will provide the enabling framework for the mainstreaming of gender into all sectors of the economy as well as create the opportunity to engage with Nigerian men on issues of women and other vulnerable groups.
“I therefore request that the delegates push for the entrenchment of affirmative action of 35 per cent, universal access to fundamental human rights as well as zero tolerance to violence and discrimination against women and girls”.
She also called on the delegates to champion the entrenchment of affirmative action to ensure the integration of women into development processes.
According to her, efforts are on to sensitise all female delegates to the need to push the gender agenda forward, saying development without women was incomplete.
Mrs Maina said it was the desire of the ministry to ensure that at the end of the conference gender issues received deserved attention.