KOGI State Governor Yahaya Bello has said his administration was committed to the elimination of gender inequality in governance, discrimination and violence against women and girls.
Bello made the declaration at a dinner during which he was conferred with the “Most Gender-Sensitive Governor Award and decoration as a Goodwill Ambassador of Nigerian Women in Lokoja on Saturday.
He said he made a determination to be a unifier, a bridge builder and an advocate of gender equality.
He said he also resolved to pursue the elimination of gender-based violence issues of maternal and newborn health as well as the rights of the girl child.
The governor said apart from the 30 per cent affirmation threshold, his administration had surpassed the 5th point of the Sustainable Development Goals focusing primarily on the three primary targets of that goal.
“We have largely ended all forms of discrimination against women and girls in Kogi, secondly, we are working to eliminate all forms of violence against women and girls in the public and private spheres, including trafficking and sexual exploitation,’’ he said.
“Today by this honour, the National Council for Women Societies (NCWS) has further thrust upon me, the great expectations and aspirations of Nigerian women both at home and abroad.
“When the NCWS, the apex umbrella of women societies came to bestow upon me the unprecedented honour of the most Gender-Sensitive Governor in Nigeria and decorated me as the `He for She’ Goodwill Ambassador for Nigerian Women, I am humbled, challenged and encouraged at the same time,’’ he said.
Dr Gloria Shoda, President NCWS in her address said: “Providing equal access to the public and economic opportunities to both men and women is vital to accomplishing a more sustainable economy and improving national well-being.’’
The NCWS President held that the composition of public institutions must reflect society for it to be perceived as legitimate, capable of delivering policies that are just and upholding equality before the law.
“Ensuring gender balance in public decision-making has been increasingly highlighted as a key governance issue related to fairness, transparency and inclusive policy outcomes,’’ she said.