By ALEX UANGBAOJE, Kaduna
As part of the plan to consolidate on his achievements in women and youth empowerment, the Executive Governor of Kaduna State, Malam Nasir el-Rufai has emphasized that gender equity and social inclusion is a fundamental human right, and not charity as many perceived it to be.
The gender-friendly Governor stated this during a one-day strategic stakeholders meeting with CSOs, the academia, and state MDAs on the review of Gender Equity and Social Inclusion (KADGESI) Policy in the state.
el-Rufai who was represented by Commissioner of Human Services and Social Development, Hajiya Hafsat Mohammed Baba, said the state is already in the process of reviewing the policy.
“We have been looking forward to review the KADGESI document across the sectors. Since its formulation in 2017, new issues that touch on everyone have since emerged and there is a need to factor them in moving forward. We see gender equity and social inclusion as a right issue, not charity”
“As a government, we have achieved so much in terms of social inclusion across the sectors. Currently, Kaduna State is leading when it comes to women inclusion. The Governor el-Rufai-led government is the most inclusive in Nigeria considering the size of women representation in government”
“We like to consolidate this achievement by reviewing the KADGESI policy to create more spaces for women, youth and persons with disability. We are deploying a rights-based approach to the review”, she said.
While thanking Rise Up and Public Health Institute for providing support for the project, university dons, Professor Hauwa Yusuf, of Gender Unit, Kaduna State University and Professor Eugenia Akpa of the Gender Policy Unit of A.B.U Zaria noted that the review is timely stressing that the review will open up opportunities for all across different sectors in the state.
On her part, one of the technical team leads, Ms. Hannatu Ahuwan of Legal Awareness for Nigerian Women (LEADS) noted that the review will prove instrumental in combating crime and insecurity in the state saying that peace and security remain pre-requisite for development.
Victor Osae Ihidero, a Rise Up Fellow, in his remark, thanked the Kaduna State Ministry of Human Services and Social Development, CSOs and MDAs represented at the meeting, noting that Kaduna State under Governor EL-Rufai has 49% women representation making it the most inclusive government in Nigeria.
He charges the technical review team to study the KADGESI policy; do a situation analysis across the sectors, identify areas to be reviewed and develop implementation strategy for sustainability.