Foundation promotes widows’ rights at sensitisation programme
In keeping with its vision of promoting widows’ rights and attaining a more equitable society for Nigerian widows, the Rose of Sharon Foundation (RoSF) held its bi-annual Widowhood Rights Programme (WRP), a widows rights stakeholders’ sensitisation and advocacy programme in Lagos.
The Foundation’s Country Manager, Dr. Ndudi Bowei, advocated for widows’ rights. She said the foundation was already taking steps to partner with the government and other non-governmental agencies to protect widows, who traditionally are victims of harmful cultural practices in the society.
She said: “The programme was created to draw attention to the challenges that widows face. In addition, we are planning to build long-term partnerships with stakeholders to foster behavioural change toward widows’ plights, including degrading and dehumanising mourning rites and related harmful cultural practices.
“To alleviate some of the challenges faced by widows, the Foundation has continued to introduce several initiatives to better the lives of widows. Some of our programmes include enterprise development training, skills acquisition and vocational training and a micro-credit scheme that gives interest-free loans to the widows.”
Representative of the Chairperson of the International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) Lagos, Ohakelem Chioma, advised the women, particularly widows, to become familiar with the laws and policies in the country. These laws, she said, were essential in the fight to protect the interest of widows, including the right to inherit their late spouse’s assets and to own property.
“Widowhood shouldn’t be an unacceptable situation in the society. However, since death is inevitable, I encourage widows to take the gauntlet and move forward. So, when the demise of a husband happens, the women must learn how to protect their rights to provide for themselves,” she stated.
The Executive Chairman, Yaba Local Council Development Area, Dr. Kayode Adejare Omiyale commended the foundation for its numerous projects geared towards the economic upliftment of widows in the state. He explained that the leadership of the local council is happy to partner with the foundation in the LCDA.
“I want to commend the Rose of Sharon Foundation. I want to thank them for caring for the widows and appeal to them to continue to do their best. We are ready to provide you support in the areas where you need them,” he said.