Abia women laud Ikpeazu, seek more leadership positions
It was a celebration of women as the Abia State government held its maiden World Gender Equality Day recently.
Office of the Special Adviser to the Governor on Gender Matters and Political Empowerment organised the ceremony in conjunction with the Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development.
The event themed ‘Gender Equality in an Unequal Political Space’ took place at the Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development, Igurube Layout, Umuahia with many dignitaries, especially women, across the state in attendance.
In her opening remarks, the Commissioner for Women Affairs, Deaconess Rose Nna Urenta, enjoined women in politics not to give up on their dreams. She hailed the wife of the governor, Mrs Nkechi Ikpeazu for bringing together women across the state and carrying them along in the development plans of her husband.
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Woman Leader, Lolo Christy Emenike, reaffirmed the readiness of the party to carry more women along in politics.
The guest speaker and magistrate with the Abia State judiciary, Lady Ngozi Nwangwa, commended the organisers of the event and enjoined women in politics to know their legal rights and not allow themselves to be cowed.
“It’s the constitutional right of women regardless of their status in the society to vote and be voted for. Women should know their constitutional rights and stand by them. Men actually respect women who know their rights,” she said.
Also, the PDP candidate for Bende Federal Constituency, Nnenna Ukeje Elendu, and the party’s candidate for Umunneochi/Isikwuato Federal Constituency, Loveth Nonye Ofoegbu urged women not to give up on their political dreams, no matter what it seems like.
The convener and Special Adviser to the Governor on Gender Matters and Political Empowerment, Mrs. Francess Olisa-Ogbonnaya, who thanked Governor Okezie Ikpeazu for making the event a reality, charged women to be actively involved in the decision-making process in the state by participating in active politics and not be intimidated.
According to her, women play crucial roles in the political space, considering their number, values, contacts, personalities and social engagements. The special adviser called on all women and girls who are above 18 years of age in the state to come out in their numbers to exercise their civic responsibilities by casting their votes in the 2023 general elections.
“The erroneous and illusionary belief that women are meant to take care of their homes without being actively involved in politics should be neglected and disregarded as such allusion is only meant to distract women. Women are the bedrock of every decision-making process both in secular and broad society,” Olisa-Ogbonnaya added.
She further thanked the governor for the support and opportunities given to Abia State women, while appealing to him to give chance to more women to showcase their God-given talent in leadership, describing women as naturally creative leaders.
The event also featured award presentations, and decorations of select women and men, including Dame Victoria Akanwa who is a foremost female legislator in the state, speaker of the House of Assembly, Chinedum Orji and his Deputy, Ifeanyi Uchendu.