An All Progressives Congress (APC) women leader, Hajiya Ramatu Tijjani Aliyu has said involvement of more women in politics and governance is the most potent way to effect gender mainstreaming on the African continent.
Speaking in an event to mark the International Day for Women in Abuja on Thursday, Aliyu said African countries that have been able to get more women into leadership and governance have made significant progress in meeting the developmental targets with evidences for all to see.
“The irony is that sustainable development is virtually impossible without frontally addressing marginalisation and adversity facing our women,” she said.
She however noted that majority of women in less developed climes like Africa are still grappling with basic necessities that their counterparts in the advanced world have since taken for granted.
She further said: “From politics and governance to the family and economy, the challenges confronting our women are as real as they are daunting. Year after year we continue to pay lip service to issues of women empowerment and gender mainstreaming.”
“Because the family and the community represent the basic structure of the average African society, the more women we have in decision making positions the better for the society at large,” she added.
The women, according to her owe themselves a duty to continue to hold governments to account on issues of gender quotas and gender mainstreaming, saying, “For the generality of women who cannot all be in leadership positions, we must urge our governments to become more compliant to globally agreed human and labour rights standards.”
She said: “This can also be done by urging our lawmakers to come up with legislations that will guarantee and promote women’s access to decent terms and conditions of employment.”