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More than a decade ago, Nigerian women had reason to expect change following a much-heralded global conference that set ambitious targets to transform the lives of women across the world. This year, no doubt, marks the 26th anniversary of that groundbreaking event, the Fourth World Conference on Women, held in Beijing, China, in 1995. Like their colleagues elsewhere, Nigerian women few years ago were unarguably not happy with the way they were being debarred from the scheme of things; both at the levels of governance and boardrooms. They were no doubt seen through the prism of agitations that portrayed them as those that has the predilection to lamentably take stock of progress and in a nagging manner always ask whoever that listens to them to what degree promised reforms have been implemented. They were also seen to have interrogated the male genders in position of authorities on why gender gap were being closed in other countries, and not closed in Nigeria, and in the same vein pushed doors of opportunities to overcome the obstacles.
At this juncture, it is pragmatic to say that if there is any reason for leaders in all spheres of the economy to ensure that gender gap in Nigeria is closed, it is unarguably the reason given by Monique Newiak few years ago in one of her analytical write-ups.
Newiak, a Senior Economist working on Nigeria in the IMF’s African Department has in most of her works focused on the production of the biannual Regional Economic Outlook on Sub-Saharan Africa and various county assignments across the continent. Thus, in one of her works she stated “For Nigeria, we have conducted specific analysis to show that if Nigeria reduced gender inequality both in the labor market and in political representation; in education; in legal rights; and also by improving health outcomes for women, the economy could grow on average by as much as 1.25 percentage points more. That is a significant number. Just to put it into context, we have just received the growth outcome for 2017 and the economy grew by 0.8 percent. So, in that context, 1.25 percentage points on average is large.
When it comes to closing gender gap, not few people will lamentingly be unanimous in their views that governments and institutions are not making efforts to close the gap. To this writer, such line of thinking is unarguably erroneous.
For instance, the […]