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Group seeks policy inclusion for elderly women

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Elderly. PHOTO: Reuters

A non-governmental organisation, Centre for Gender Economic Initiative (CGE) has stressed the need for policymakers to create policies that would accommodate the welfare of elderly women while also improving on the existing laws for the aged.
   
According to the United Nations estimates, the number of older persons (60+) will double from the current 600 million to 1.2 billion by 2025, and again, to two billion by 2050.
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The vast majority of older people, according to CGE, live in their homes and communities, but in environments that have not been designed with their needs and capacities in mind.
   
Speaking at policy dialogue in Lagos to commemorate the recently celebrated International Women’s Day, Executive Director, CGE, Uchenna Idoko, said promoting older women’s health and wellbeing through social leisure and sports had been the focus of the group.
  
Idoko argued that when policymakers push for a strategy of girl child in science, it would spur development in the society.
 
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She said most women suffer inequality at old age while seeking an end to such acts.
   
According to her, most ministries, departments, and agencies of government in Nigeria do not have a policy for elderly women; hence the need for them to look towards such direction is necessary.
 
Deputy Director, Non-communicable Diseases Control, Lagos State Ministry of Health, Dr. Abimbola Oshinowo, stressed the need for the elderly to go for regular checks as she stated that people above the age of 60 are entitled to free treatment.
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She said there is a need for regular exercise for the younger generation to engage in the aging process.
 
Earlier in her remarks, Project Officer, Elderly Women’s Wellbeing Project, CGE, Blessing Uchegbulam, said a lot of older women had been living in isolation because of lack of mobility.
   
Hence, she said there is a need for the government’s policy and practice to help engage them in sports and exercise by creating the right environment.

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