The Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG), has sought for increased participation of women in politics and agricultural sector to accelerate the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the country.
Dr Osasiyi Dirisu, Deputy Director on Policy Innovation Centre, NESG, made this known on Wednesday at a press conference on the maiden edition of the Policy Innovation Centre (PIC) Gender and Inclusion Summit (GS-22) in Abuja.
Dirisu said involvement of women in political sphere and the agricultural sector would aide in achieving the SDGs and promote gender inclusion.
She said the forthcoming summit in Nov. 16 would provide a platform to explore transformative ways to improve inclusion, equity and foster gender responsive governance in the country.
“We recognise that women are underrepresented in politics and we have dedicated a whole track to ensure that conversation is in the summit,’’ she said.
She maintained that for women to engage meaningfully in politics there was need for mental mindset shift, remove barriers affecting them and proffer support to promote their political participation.
“What we are going to do is begin to have those conversations, identify where the barriers are and then work closely because you see, sometimes we do programming without evidence and that is why those programmes fail.
“So what is the evidence around what is keeping them from engaging within the political system? We need to begin to identify that, put it together, look at what policy strategies can help.
“That is why one of our goals is improving gender responsive governance, if we don’t have that in place, we cannot build on that foundation, or begin to talk about political participation of women in politics,” she said.
Also, Mr Laoye Jaiyeola, the group’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), said women were disproportionately affected by unequal treatment on the basis of gender.
Jaiyeola attributed the low involvement of women in agriculture to inadequate funding and support.
“The fact of the case is that when it comes to all the value addition and all the things that have much more announcements and ratings, women are not involved.
“This is because assess to finances is not there and a couple of others.
“So as a nation, if we really boost the involvement of gender and make it become more inclusive, it will show that this economy is going to do a lot better for all of us,” he said
He, however, commended the Nigerian government for implementing policies such as the National gender Policy, National Gender Action Plan (NGAP) aimed at improving gender inclusion.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the forthcoming summit, with a theme, “Connecting the dots for a gender inclusive society,” scheduled in Nov. 16 has 18 tracks revolving around gender inclusion. (NAN)