By; Patrick Titus, Uyo.
Akwa Ibom State Government has reiterated its commitment to enforce the law prohibiting obnoxious and harmful practices against women and the girl child in the state.
The State Governor Mr. Udom Emmanuel stated this in Uyo, the state capital, described as humiliating treatment meted out to women in the name of cultural practices saying that the female gender who should be handled with tenderness, love and care are subjected to excruciating psychological torture which they do not deserve.
He said “Women play a very critical role in the development of any society. They are our mothers and wives, our nurturers and care givers. Little wonder Ralph Waldo Emerson said that “men are what their mothers made them”. Sadly, and despite this very important role they play in our lives, many women are still being subjected to abuse and discrimination in many parts of the world. This is indeed sad and reprehensible.”
Speaking further, Governor Emmanuel stated “the theme for this year’s International Women’s Day – Be Bold For Change – is very appropriate. It is a call for action on the part of all of us, as offspring of women, as husbands, as citizens and as a government, to help forge a better and more gender-sensitive world. We should be bold enough to drive the process of changing the fortunes of our womenfolk in our spheres of influence. This should be evident in the way we treat our women and issues concerning them. “
He said that hard time await persons who violate the girl child and rights of widows assuring that the state legal machinery would clamp down on culprits to serve as deterrent to others.
Mr. Emmanuel said that woman must be adequately empowered to enable them cope with modern day life realities and described the theme of the Celebration “Be Bold for Change” as apt saying that it challenges the woman to rise to her faith of greatness.
Governor Emmanuel congratulated the Women for the celebration and reminded them of the struggles their forbears went through to secure equality and improved work conditions.
“History records that the commemoration of International Women’s Day began as a struggle. A struggle for the rights of women, a struggle for gender parity, and a struggle for better living and working conditions for women. This struggle may have been headlined by demonstrations in far flung parts of the world but our women also played an integral part in this history”
He announced plans to establish a floor mill to address the challenges encountered by Confectionery producers as well as assist women who are into backing business in the state.