The Honourable Minister for women affairs Dame Pauline Tallen has pledged her support to the Women Progressive Development Academy.
Tallen states this while receiving the Women Lobby Group of the ruling Party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) which came on courtesy call on Tuesday, 14th September, 2021.
In a statement Signed by
Director, Press & Public Relations to the ministry, the Honourable Minister pledged her support for the Progressives Women Academy (PWA), a Digital Academy set up to effect and accelerate training and capacity building for more women in trades and skills in Leadership.
The Group sought the input of the Women Affairs Ministry for materials to make the platform functional as the platform will be used to train women in tailoring and fashion designing, beads and bags and bag making, agro-allied businesses such as plants, animal husbandry, poultry and fish-farming, soap, detergent, Confectionary and baking businesses, catering, events’ venue decorations and many others through which the Group intends to place many more women who would otherwise be jobless, in profitable employment.
“The target of the digital platform is to empower an additional 2 million women in Nigeria. This will unleash 4 million jobs and reach 12 million dependants of women in 2 years.” Honourable Stella Okotete who led the group to see the Honourable Minister said, “for any woman to be a part of the digital academy (PWA), all that is required is ownership of a GSM telephone and a telephone number.” she said. “Women through the PWA will share knowledge and learn from experienced business owners.”
Mrs. Okotete further disclosed that through the Women Academy (Digital Platform), women will be trained in leadership capabilities, mobilized and supported to contest elective posts into local, States and National positions having realized through its research that women have been disadvantaged at seeking political offices in the democratic space in Nigeria.
She however, painted a gradually changing picture. She disclosed the target of the Group for 108 elective slots in Nigeria’s House of Representatives which she said,
”Is achievable with when women with one voice (and that is the theme of our upcoming Women Arise Conference) target 3 slots out of the federal representatives from 10 seats of each of the 36 States.”
The Lobby Group also acquainted the Honourable Minister’s reception Team which was comprised of the Permanent Secretary of Federal Ministry of Women Affairs, Engr. Funso Adebiyi; Director, Press and Public Relations; Special Assistant (Technical to the Minister); Ag. Director of Women Development; Deputy-Director, Child Development; and others, of the Group’s upcoming Women Conference: Women Arise with the theme: With One Voice.
With regards to the planned Women Arise Conference, Dame Tallen requested the Lobby Group to acquaint her Office with the details of the upcoming Conference so that her Ministry can study the areas where their requested assistance can be addressed.
The Delta State-born National Women Representative of the All Progressives Congress (APC) who led the Women Lobby Group, Honourable Stella Okotete came with Farida Odangt (FCT), Nana Abdulrahman (Kogi), Mrs. Hailmary Aipoh (FCT), Market-Leader (Iyaloja of Abuja) Toyin Badmus (Ondo), Aishat Yakubu (FCT), Oyanbo Owei (Bayelsa), who is a member of the Governing Board of the Nigerian Content Management and Development (NCDMB) and Udeme Etuk (Akwa Ibom) to see the Honourable Minister, has declared its decision “to lobby all Office-holders in the current administration to get support for Nigerian women in their developmental aspirations and quest for unrestricted women’s economic, social and political participation for progressive women.”
Hon. Stella Okotete disclosed that her group will among other things, influence legislation, regulate party decisions and governments’ actions and policies to the benefit of more Nigerian women.
“We seek equal opportunities to participate in emerging power and decision-making structures; we want more women’s contribution to all aspects of life recognised, rewarded and celebrated – in leadership, in care and in production; we don’t want any woman left behind”, she declared.
The Honourable Minister, Pauline Tallen also tasked the APC Women Group to seek innovative ways of remedying the “poverty” gap which she sees as a militating factor to most women seeking elective offices.
“Women are not as rich as the men; that is why some of them can be bought over during campaigns for elections; this must be remediated.”
Dame Tallen also said that,
“Virtually all issues women are seeking to address: SGBV, poverty, quest for more political representation, can be addressed when we secure the buy-in of the men, especially of the critical traditional and religious leaders, like the ones which the Sultan of Sokoto seeks to bring aboard”, urged the women that “we have to work together; As we work together, we have to work to put all our critics to shame. On the need to enrich the digital platform, the Permanent Secretary of my Ministry and the Directors will do that; and please tabulate and send to me what each of the Governors of the States have done to encourage and assist to get more political representations to women so that I can thank them and encourage them to do more”; the Honourable Minister directed.
The Delta State born Honourable Stella Okotete had earlier requested the support and the assistance of Federal Ministry of Women Affairs and of the Honourable Minister for the planned upcoming Women Arise Conference which she disclosed has the theme: “With One Voice”.
Director, Press & Public Relations.