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Stakeholders push for increased female participation in STEM training

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Executive Secretary of the NCDMB, Simbi Wabote

Stakeholders in the oil and gas sector have called for increased female participation in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education to bridge gender gap in the energy sector.
   
Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Simbi Wabote, stated this at a virtual roundtable by the Diversity Sectoral Working Group (SWG) of the Nigerian Content Consultative Forum (NCCF).
   
In his remarks, Wabote stated that the mandate of the Board has always been the need to promote local content in every sphere of the oil and gas sector.
  
Citing Section 57 of the NCDMB Act, he said the role of the NCCF is to provide a platform for information sharing and support to chart a way for local content development in Nigeria.

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According to Wabote, “the basic aim of the NCCF is to seek how to harness ideas and collaborative efforts for women development with basic emphasis in the oil and gas sector which is why I need to emphasize that this is a purely professional group and not a political group that will begin to advocate for political offices or positions for women.
 
“Therefore, all our communications with all women groups will be through the NCCF.”
   
Speaking further on the need for funding in the local content sector, he said the agency was committed fully in that aspect.
    
“Key enablers to local content development are funding, which is why we approached the governing council of the NCDMB and they graciously approved $20 million loan support scheme for women in business which will be domiciled in the Bank of Industry and collaboratively managed by the BoI and the NCDMB,” he added.
   
Earlier in her remarks, the chairperson of the Diversity SWG of the NCCF, Alero Onosode, said the working group was established to identify areas of collaborations as there are about nine groups working together to harness value for women in the oil and gas sector.
   
She added: “The group has four key pillars of which centres on how to impact the lives of women in the sector as well as research to know the current data of women participation as there is no confirmed data yet.”

Others, according to Onosode included: “Policy advocacy and capacity development which will enhance networking and stakeholder engagement.”
    
She noted that the target was that by the end of 2021, there should be valuable data of women in business and women in organisations available by the group.

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