Rise Up in collaboration with Cummins Incorporated have called on government to implement women-friendly policies to address issues affecting women across the country.
Stressing that Nigerian women and girls are faced with significant challenges in attaining their full potentials, they have identified poor policy implementation as a major factor limiting women from achieving their goals.
Programme manager for Rise Up, Africa, Chantal Hildebrand, said that global data has shown that when women are in a leadership position, there is gender equity within government, the country gets better, stronger, healthier, and happier with better opportunities.
On the upcoming general elections, Hildebrand tasked Nigerian women on the need for them to learn about their candidates, ask them about their plans for women and girls hold them accountable and ensure there are strategies in place to protect women and girls.
“We want to ensure that women are actively being able to be part of the decision and their inputs are taken into account at the same level as their men. We have only selected 20 leaders from Kaduna and Lagos for this phase; they will be spreading this information and training more people,” she said.
Hildebrand disclosed that the leadership training organised by Rise Up for civil society leaders was to prepare them to see the value of women in decision-making as well as advocate for them.
Similarly, Country Director of the organisation, Mrs Theresa Effa, said they are advancing health development and gender amongst women and girls and work most especially with civil society leaders to strengthen their leadership and advocacy skills in order for them to undertake advocacy efforts that would improve the lives of women and girls in Nigeria.
Effa continued: “Nigeria has beautiful policies that touch on all the issues we are talking about, but the implementation is the major challenge. That is why we need to continue the advocacy to remind government to pay more attention to issues affecting women and girls. Putting out a policy means that they recognize the problem and intend to address the problem but they are not addressing the problem. ”
“Rise Up has trained more than 200 people in Nigeria, but for this particular gender equity project that we initiated in April this year, we have trained 40 people. After this second training and especially because it is an election year, we want to see how this group of civil society leaders will engage our new leaders and see how far their engagement will be Impactful and also bring the necessary results we want to see.
Managing Director of Cummins West Africa Limited, Ade Obatoyinbo, said the intention of the two organisations was centred on betterment of people’s lives and empowering a more prosperous world.