NGO advocates laws to promote gender inclusiveness


Dr Joe Okei-Odumakin

Dr Joe Okei-Odumakin

A Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), Women Arise for Change Initiative, on Thursday urged the National Assembly to formulate more robust laws that could promote gender inclusiveness in the country.

Dr Joe Okei-Odumakin, the President of the group, gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.

The rights activist spoke in commemoration of International Women’s (IWD) Day, usually celebrated on March 8 every year.

NAN reports that the day was adopted in 1975 by the United Nations as a focal point in the movement for women’s rights.

The theme for this year’s IWD is “Balance for Better’’.

Okei-Odumakin said: “we require more robust laws that can further promote gender inclusiveness, especially in our public institutions and governance.

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“This can also be enhanced by wider advocacy by the media, civil societies and other stakeholders within the society.

“Even though there had been great improvements in Nigeria’s quest toward promoting gender balance, considering the level of advocacy by relevant civil society organisations and selected government institutions, a lot of grounds are yet to be covered.

“The realisation of a gender-balanced society is still being restricted and hindered by traditional and religious sentiments, archaic laws and some other societal factors.’’

She, therefore, urged the incoming legislators to focus on formulating laws that would directly impact on the ordinary Nigerians.

Okei-Odumakin also called on the incoming legislators to consider a progressive review of the constitution, especially in areas that could enhance true federalism in the country.

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