Nigerians on Wednesday joined the rest of the world to celebrate 2018 International Women’s Day with many sharing messages with the hashtag #IWD2018 and ‘Press For Progress’ as the theme.
Nigerians shared messages and pictures on different social media platforms in support of greater involvement of women in the affairs of the nation.
Also, Civil society and non-governmental organizations held events to press for gender sensitivity in governance and policy implementations.
In commemorating the day, Women Advocates Research and Documentation Centre (WARDC) urged women urged the government to implement policies that will promote the inclusiveness of women in politics and governance of the country.
“Increasing the level of women participation in politics and creating an enabling environment for women to participate in politics by economic empowerment and adequate education of women for political participation” Abiola Akiode, head of WARDC said.
WARDC also asked government to revise laws and administrative policies and practices that are denying women equal rights and access to economic resources while undertaking legal reforms that will give women full and equal access to economic resources.
Meanwhile, Secretary for Gender Balancing and Youth Development of Abundant Nigeria Renewal Party (ANRP), Ms Christiana Ojo advised Nigerian women not to get carried away with the celebration that comes with the day but to discuss, chart a new course and devise practical solutions to challenges women face in the society.
“The International Women's Day should not just be spent celebrating the achievements of women, and womanhood or merely discussing the myriads of women-related challenges, but should be a day, among many, spent to proffer sustainable and practical solutions to these challenges that have held a great number of women back from political and economic expression and evolution,” Christiana said.
The Bring Back Our Girls #BBOG movement in Nigeria also seized the opportunity of the Women’s Day to urge government to intensify its efforts in ensuring the release of the remaining kidnapped Chibok girls and recently kidnapped 110 Dapchi girls-pupils.
“Time is Now theme (of the UN) resonates strongly with our movement in light of the fact that nearly four years after 276 girls were kidnapped from a secondary school in Chibok in Borno State, 110 girls were kidnapped from a secondary school in Dapchi in Yobe State 17 days ago.”
“We can only imagine that our girls, their parents, the Chibok community who are living this harsh reality are praying that every day should be their last day in captivity. Our movement believes they should never have been taken in the first place.” The group expressed.
A 2017 report by Gender Gap places Nigeria in 122nd positions out of 144 countries investigated across the world.