Labour unions seek participation of women in national development
The organised labour unions have emphasised the need for women participation in policy and decision-making across all tiers of government to ensure sustainable development of Nigeria.
They argued that the absence of equal opportunities for all, inability to access education for all genders, difficulty in accessing loans and credit facilities, traditions that restrict the rights of women to own property and unequal pay for men and women with similar qualification continue to threaten quest for gender parity.
These submissions were made during the celebration of the International Women’s Day.
A presentation made by Senator Oluremi Tinubu at the Trade Union Congress Women Commission in Lagos, stated that policy-making must be inclusive of all peoples within a society to ensure sustainable development.
Tinubu who was represented by Hon Abiodun Elegushi said in order to realise parity, women must be involved in gender inclusive budgeting, and restructuring of revenue collection, expenditure and the budget that should meet the demands of women.
The President of TUC, Bobbo Kaigama, in his remarks stated that women are still yet to realise their full power and potentials.
While bemoaning the low level of women participation in leading roles in the country, Kaigama canvassed equal participation in all walks of life with the menfolk.
Kaigama told women to get involved in every activity that would engender their course, but was quick to add that they must also not forget your role as mothers and homemakers.
Earlier, the Chairperson, TUC, Women’s Commission, Oyinkan Olasanoye, who described this year’s theme, “Press for Progress”, as apt, stated that it should provoke and spur women to identify their strength and abilities, notwithstanding the inhibitions placed by culture and the society.
Noting that women can change the tide if given the chance, Olasanoye called on women for stronger action in the areas of advocacy, education, governance and polities.
Similarly, oil workers under the auspices of Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN), reiterates its commitment, adoption and implementation of policies that promote gender equality in the oil and gas industry.
The President of the union, Olabode Johnson, expressed worry about the high level of violence against the vulnerable groups in the country, particularly women and children, at home and schools.
He advocated for the adequate implementation of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act, 2015.
Johnson said: “We therefore reiterate our commitment to the ILO Convention on Gender Based Violence to ensure dignity for our women in the oil and gas industry. We will continue to encourage them to participate more in the Association’s activities. Let us all adopt that when women come together with a collective intention, magic happens and our country will rise to the height of glory.”
Also, at the United Labour Congress (ULC), the President of the union, Joe Ajaero said laws that will not only to protect women and outlaw discrimination based on gender but also penalise it.
Chairperson, ULC women commission, Havilah Ofulue called for the creation of platforms that would protect, project and serve as a continuous advocacy instrument for pushing the frontiers of the struggle for women emancipation.