Stakeholders call for active participation of women in STEM
Stakeholders have called for active participation of women in Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) for socio economic advancement in Africa.
They also harped on empowerment for building women capacity to enhance growth and development in the country.
They spoke during a three-fold event, which saw the launch of African Women Capacity Building Network (AWCBN), a book launch titled Corruption Is Not The Problem’ and the 78th birthday ceremony of Dr. Violet Arene.
A former Vice-Chancellor, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Professor Benjamin Ozumba, said, “You cannot empower someone who doesn’t have basic knowledge of what you want to teach. A lot of women are restricted to the other room. I have found out that girls are more serious in the universities but are held down by societal values”.
Ozumba noted that to ensure gender equality, there is need for a transformation of mindset.
Arene, who is the President, AWCBN, said the awareness on empowerment must go beyond its current level to bridge gender gap for equal opportunities, even at leadership positions.
On the book, she said, “We are yet to identify the major problem we have in Nigeria. The book identifies a bigger picture of corruption, beyond the people involved. When you read the book and understand my point of view, you will come closer to the solution of the corruption scourge in Africa. The book is about how far the African continent has gone after independence.”
Wife of late Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe, Prof. Uche Azikiwe, urged government to equip women with knowledge and skills that will position for financial enablement and economic growth.
According to Azikiwe, some benefits of capacity building includes strengthened skills, knowledge, confidence, minimises over reliance on others, fosters a sense of ownership and enhances financial growth and development.