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Stakeholders urge inclusivity ahead gender summit as economic losses rises

By Tina Abeku, Abuja
29 September 2022   |   8:00 am
As Nigeria gets set to host a mega gender summit in the nation's capital, stakeholders have insisted that unless men, women and the vulnerable are involved, attaining gender parity could be a mirage

From left to right, Yinka Iyinolakan, Head Corporate Communication and Advocacy, NESG, Dr Osasuyi Dirisu, Deputy Director, PIC, Laoye Jaiyeola, CEO, NESG and Kemi Omole, Gender and Inclusion Advisor, PIC, at the pre-gender summit media briefin, Wednesday in Abuja

*Nigeria ranks 139 on global inequality index

As Nigeria gets set to host a mega gender summit in the nation’s capital, stakeholders have insisted that unless men, women and the vulnerable are involved, attaining gender parity could be a mirage

Chief Executive Officer, (CEO), of the Nigeria Economic Summit, (NESG), Laoye Jaiyeola, made this known at a pre-summit media briefing organised by the NESG in partnership with the Policy Innovation Center, (PIC), yesterday in Abuja

Jaiyeola said although Nigeria remains one of the largest economies in Africa, gender inequality gaps across all facets of the economy have continued to impede financial growth leading to financial losses per person.

According to him, “Data shows that on a per capita basis, gender inequality in earnings could lead to a wealth loss of $23, 620 per person globally with an estimated global loss of about $160.2 trillion in human capital wealth.

“$26 billion of this (estimated loss), could be recovered if Nigeria is able to close her existing gender inequality gap.”

The CEO explained that the summit is against the backdrop of Nigeria’s low ranking on the global gender inequality index.

“According to the World Economic Forum 2021, Nigeria ranks 139 of 149 countries on the global gender index ranking”, he said.

Deputy Director, Policy Innovation center, Dr Osasuyi Dirisu, observed that gender inequality not only affects women but also men and people with disabilities whenever either group is discriminated against or marginalized in terms of job opportunities, political or public office considerations and economic opportunities among others.

She pointed out that ” Joint efforts towards addressing gender inequality related losses is key to gender equality and an accelerator to achieving all the Sustainable Development Goals, ( SDGs).”

She said the summit-themed ‘Connecting the Dots for A Gender Inclusive Policy” aims to give a holistic outlook and in-depth discussion on issues surrounding gender with the target of joining missing links in the gender conversation.

She adds that women alone cannot be empowered if their spouses and men around them are not carried along each step of education and enlightenment regarding the importance of gender parity to economic empowerment.

Further stressing the importance of gender parity to the realisation of the SDGs by 2030, Project Director of the NESG High-Level Forum on SDGs, Tayo Aduloju, said gender equality remains central to attaining the SDGs.