As the International Womenâ€™s Day (IWD) is being celebrated across the world, leaders of various countries have been called upon to ensure women parity for rapid social, economic and political development.
Director, Women United for Economic Empowerment and Clement Isong Centre for Development Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Uyo, Dr. Etim Frank made the call on Tuesday at the Foundation for Partnership Initiatives in the Niger Deltaâ€™s (PIND) 2016 International Womenâ€™s Day Forum, held in Asaba, Delta State.
In a paper titled, â€œPledge for Parity Support Women in Agriculture in Nigeriaâ€ presented on the occasion, Frank, affirmed that â€œthe means to gender parity does not require a police officer to guide over usâ€.
â€œIt is instructive to note that, all first world societies defined as â€˜developed countries, are those which have pledge parity and have put it into practice.
â€œAll third world are developing societies, which have not upheld women parityâ€, Frank stated.
The guest speaker stressed the need for individual to change the behavioural pattern in which they have been socialized to accommodate the women on the basis of equality.
He explained that the rationality of this yearâ€™s theme, â€œPledge for Parityâ€ simply means a conscious effort to ensure fairness and equality in accessing particularly the means of livelihood, political decision-making structures, social and economic infrastructure in homes, communities and in the society at large.
â€œIt is important to know that both men and women jointly formed the political and economic society that we live in today hence they should equally have access to public and private goodâ€.
â€œGender parity, fairness, or equality would generate more productivity and it would mean more gender balanced leadership and better all round performanceâ€, Frank added.
While quoting Ban Ki Moon the UN Secretary General, he said â€œUntil women and girl are liberated from poverty and injustice, all our goals peace, security and sustainable development stand in jeopardyâ€.
In an address, the PINDâ€™s Field Projects Manager, Mr. Sylvester Okoh, said the body has been promoting gender equality in the Niger Delta region through its programmes, projects and operations since its inception.
According to him, PIND works to establish and encourage innovative multi-stakeholder partnerships that empower communities to achieve a peaceful and enabling environment for equitable peaceful economic growth in the Niger Delta.