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Professionals push for 25 per cent female representation in top jobs


With the vision of achieving 25 per cent of female representation in top positions, the Leading Ladies Africa and stakeholders are raising the stakes in the campaign and grooming of women in fields of leadership, business, politics and advocacy.

Besides the pursuit of the elusive inclusivity, the stakeholders are aiming at meeting the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals – five (SDG 5), which is primarily on empowering women and promoting gender equality.

But in promoting inclusivity and diversity, Leading Ladies Africa has already developed programmes that would equip women with skills, provide hands-on capacity training and inspire them to achieve their set objectives in their lives, businesses and careers.


The Chief Digital and Innovation Officer, Union Bank, Lola Cardoso, described the initiative as one that will help amplify the bank’s efforts to support women and drive gender balance in Nigeria.

As part of its initiative, a two-month practical, hands-on programme that is focused on enabling women entrepreneurs in Nigeria to identify business opportunities, create and sustain viable enterprises, and scale up their businesses was established, where 40 female entrepreneurs were unveiled.

Union Bank, in conjunction with the women-focused not-for-profit organisation, officially unveiled 40 female entrepreneurs, who will be participating in the keenly sought after Enterprise and Leadership Programme (ELP).

“Union Bank is proud to support these female entrepreneurs and enable their success. We are excited about the impact the programme will have on the women and their businesses, and the ripple effects on the society at large,” she said.

The founder of Leading Ladies Africa, Francesca Uriri, said: “We are pleased that Union Bank, through its αlpher Initiative, is fully supporting Leading Ladies Africa’s ELP. We are running this programme because we understand that there are a very clear need for most micro, small and medium sized businesses to develop structure and systems that enable them scale, generate profit and become sustainable.

“We received over 1,700 entries for this programme from female entrepreneurs in Nigeria, and even from other African countries, which made us reiterate the need and value in supporting enterprises.

“The Programme will be run in conjunction with the China Europe Business School (CEIBS), because we understand how important it is for the ladies to benefit from a global academic and business faculty.”

However, Union Bank said it supports initiatives that foster women empowerment and gender balance.

Through alpher, the bank’s newly introduced women’s proposition, it is focused on enabling success for women of all ages and backgrounds, providing them with the support they require to live more empowered and fulfilled lives.

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