By Vivian Onyebukwa
Common Wealth Business Women Network (CBWN), Nigeria, has urged the Federal government to place women at the centre of post-pandemic economic development and rebuilding efforts.
In a statement by the Chief Operating Officer of CBWN, Ngozi Oyewole, she stressed the need for policy makers in Nigeria, the Commonwealth, and United Nations, to recognise women as the architects of a new global economy.
Oyewole further advocated for new policy frameworks with concrete goals and data-driven national targets that would increase the number and strengthen the capacities of women-owned businesses.
She, therefore, applauded the countries that have introduced COVID-19 responses to fund and offer services to women entrepreneurs and women in other businesses like power, energy, technology, oil & gas.
“We crave your indulgence to always include women’s businesses in your national plans and measures to support SMEs also, as women at the grassroots are the ones pushing the SDG2 for zero hunger and so must be empowered. This call won’t be complete if I don’t disclose the challenges women have faced in the areas of access to funds, lack of tax incentives, too many bureaucracy from the government and organisations in the areas of procurement of goods from women owned businesses, lack of digital education to enable us have information, skills and training to showcase our leadership prowess in the digital space, social protection especially rape, abuse and mental health. We will not diminish our role in the public and private sectors, civil-society organisations, business associations, schools and universities”
While announcing CBWN’s Annual General Meeting (AGM), scheduled to take place in Lagos on Saturday February 27, 2021, she pledged her organization’s readiness to collaborate in building an ecosystem that allows women entrepreneurs and other women in other areas to thrive.