Gov Ambode pledges commitment to champion cause of women, girl-child

Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State on Tuesday pledged his administration’s commitment to championing the cause of women by promoting women empowerment programmes and girl-child education.

Ambode, represented by the Deputy Governor, Dr Idiat Adebule, said this at the 2016 International Women’s Day programme, organised by the Lagos State Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation (WAPA).

He said that the government would also continue to provide a level playing ground for women and ensure parity in public administration.

“We live in a world where women are largely exploited as support and back-up; only to be seen and not heard.

“As a government, we will ensure that women are protected from S3xual and domestic assaults, and we will continue to accord women their right of place in the society.

“We will also ensure that no woman or girl-child will be made vulnerable or disenfranchised on the basis of gender, religion or social status in the state,” he said.

Ambode appreciated the role of women in the state’s civil service, community development, policy formulation and governance.

Also speaking, Mrs Bolanle Ambode, wife of the Lagos State Governor, urged government at all levels to redouble their efforts in the area of women empowerment and education of the girl child.

“If we succeed in educating the girl-child in the country, then we have educated virtually the entire country.

“Women have a lot to contribute in the society, therefore, existing legislation must properly tackle wicked cultural stereotypes against women to enable them freely utilise their potentials,” she said.

In her remarks, Mrs Lola Akande, the Commissioner, WAPA, said the participation and empowerment of women were key requirements for development and peace in the country.

Akande called for more advocacy and action on gender equality, to encourage more women participation in governance.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the International Women’s Day is marked every March 8.

The day is usually set aside to celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievement of women as well as step up commitments on gender equality, women’s empowerment and women’s human rights.

The theme for this year’s celebration is “Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step It Up for Gender Equality’’