By Kenneth Jukpor
MMS Woman of Fortune Hall of Fame (WoFHoF) Initiative has called for the passage of the gender bills by the National Assembly.
The Initiative made this call today as it organized a Road-Walk and a sensitization lecture in Lagos as part of activities to celebrate the 2022 International Women’s Day (IWD).
While the United Nation’s hashtag for IWD is #BreakingTheBias, MMS WoFHoF Initiative tagged its as #PunctureTheStereotypes as the non-governmental organization sought to project women’s rights and called for more women participation in governance and other aspects of leadership.
Speaking at the event, which held at the MMS International Image Centre, Festac, the Founder of the Initiative, Mr. Kingsley Anaroke encouraged women to distinguish themselves with character and excellence instead of expecting favours based on their gender.
Anaroke expressed regret at the failure of the National Assembly to pass the crucial women bills, admonishing women to take a decision to vote women candidates only in the 2023 general elections.
The MMS WoFHoF Founder, who delivered a paper on “Breaking the Bias in the Business Environment and Workplace”, encouraged women to go for the requisite education and training in a bid to deliver at the best standards on par and better than their male counterparts.
“Don’t be worried when you’re given more work. Never see this as a punishment or stress, see it as an indirect opportunity to learn more and become better at something else. When you think this way, you’re empowered in such a way that you can challenge the men in any endeavour. Men shouldn’t look at you from the prism of pity, you are in competition at the workplace or the business environment. Refine your abilities and the potentials in you to be a complete success in whatever you do,” Anaroke said.
Speaking earlier, the Executive Secretary of MMS WoFHoF Initiative, Mrs. Ifeoma Iloh observed that the event is more significant in Nigeria to women because it coincided with the renewed agitation for the passage of key gender sensitive bills at the National Assembly, a process that is a precursor of the constitution amendment.
“Unfortunately, these bills did not scale through the wall of bias by men at both legislative chambers. Consequently, Nigerian women have been moody and agitated. MMS WOFHOF Initiative therefore lends its voice against this gross insensitivity of some of the legislators for gender-related causes.”
“We demand for the immediate passage of all women-related bills at the National Assembly. While we commend the leadership of the House of Representatives for rescinding their earlier position on the bills, we call on both chambers to revisit the rejected bills,” Iloh said.
Meanwhile, one of the participants, Mrs. Anthonia Williams observed that Nigerian women have been deprived of most things in the society because of the lack of unity among themselves.
“We have to be united as women because without unity we can’t achieve much. You find a woman in business selling the same product or service for the right price and other women will rather patronize the men for no reason. We should be more united to be able to promote our ideals,” she said.
Also speaking at the summit, the Chief Executive Officer, Floxy N Cakes and Events, Mrs. Nkiru Nweke encouraged women not be held back by their over-protective husbands who may not want them to engage in any business or career venture.
She narrated her personal story revealing how she left the house daily to learn baking and pastries for over a year secretly after her husband disapproved her efforts to work. Eventually, she started up the business from the home and it blossomed until she had to get an office and the business became a huge financial support to her family even as she has trained several women to become like her.