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Stakeholders canvass women development to promote economy

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The need for government at all levels to empower women across the country to promote economic development, has been stressed.

The Head of Mass Communication, University of Lagos (UNILAG), Prof Abigail Ogwezzy-Ndisikka, gave the advice at the Whitefield Foundation programme, tagged: “She has Ability, Position and Equip her (S.H.P.E) 2020,” in Lagos.

She said empowerment is one way of tackling human rights and development “since it enhances both the quality and quantity of human resources available for development.”

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The expert, during the kick-off of the training for some women by Whitefield Foundation, in partnership with The Coca Cola Foundation (TCCF), urged the participants to acquire the three Cs – competence, capacity, and character during their training, advised that the project should go beyond skills acquisition to capacity building in business.

The Chief Executive Officer, Whitefield Foundation, Mrs Funmi Johnson, said although 1,242 women applied, only 700 were shortlisted while 500 were enlisted.

Each of them received grants for their start-ups and would be empowered with vocational, business and life and skills.She identified the Foundation’s main objective as the eradication of poverty in Africa through the provision of quality education, adding that the 17-year-old group had organised empowerment programmes for youths, provided free tutorial and technology classes to about 5,000 students, and scholarships to indigent students.

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She said the group was targeting the empowerment of one million women by 2023, noting that the African woman has a lot of abilities, and if she is not empowered, then it is not fair to her, and the world is the loser.

She said: “As a Foundation committed to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, we started out by getting heavily involved in the education sector with the aim of helping the underprivileged to close the knowledge gap.”

She thanked the Coca Foundation for their support, and enjoined the beneficiaries to avail themselves the opportunity offered.Justice Josephine Adenike Coker of the Lagos High Court, who also spoke at the event, advised participants to be focused and take their

career as a journey, saying that success is not achieved in a day, and as such, should give their best to their work.Public Affairs and Communication Manager, Coca Cola, Nwamaka Onyemelukwe, said the drink giant gives priority to women because they represent two-thirds of the world’s population and are strong pillars of the society.

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