By Lizzy Okoji
Buhari made the call on Tuesday during the Women in Culture event organised by the Chinese Embassy in Abuja in commemoration of the 2022 International Women’s Day celebrated annually on March 8.
The first lady who was represented by Dr Rukayatu Gurin, Special Assistant to the President on Women Affairs and Administration, expressed regret at the National Assembly’s decision to turn down the Bill seeking to promote women’s interests.
She applauded the resilience of women and encouraged them to do more.
She underscored the need for joint efforts towards ensuring better healthcare, education, and employment for women and the vulnerable.
According to Buhari, the Aisha Buhari Foundation and Future Assured projects have worked in close collaboration to contribute significantly to the development of women, youths, and children.
“The theme of this year’s celebration: `Gender Equality for Sustainable Development’ not only identifies the vital role of women in sustainable development, but also signifies the role of women as mothers, sisters, and daughters in engineering sustainable development.
“The role cannot be effectively executed without promoting partnerships and collaborations in the provision of education, health, and empowerment to women and youth.
“Aisha Buhari Foundation and Future Assured have in partnership and collaboration contributed a lot to the development of women, youth, and children.
“On this special day, I thank the ambassador and our development partners for working hard to promote women’s development.
“To our women, I salute your resilience and encourage you to do more.
“To our stakeholders, I urge you to network more and intensify efforts to do more for women and children to reduce the effects of climate change.
“We need everybody’s support in providing education, health, employment, empowerment for women and the vulnerable.
“I, therefore, call upon all to join hands in promoting women’s equality and empowerment for sustainable development,” Buhari said.
Mrs Liang Huili, Wife of the Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, described women as founders of human civilisation and promoters of social progress.
Liang said the level of women’s development in society serves as a key index of civilisation.
“With joint efforts of the whole society, Chinese women have made great progress in all fields. Their statuses in economics, decision-making, management, health, and education have been continuously improved.
“The gender gap narrowed from 4.1 per cent in 2010 to 2.8 per cent.
“The proportion of female employees in the whole society remains above 40 per cent. Overall, tremendous success has been achieved in poverty alleviation among rural poor women.
“As of the end of 2020, women accounted for about half of the nearly 100 million people who had been lifted out of poverty.
“The proportion of deputies to the National Women’s Congress and members of the Chinese People’s Consultative Congress is the highest in history,” Liang said.
She, however, said that in spite of the progress made in the protection of their rights in employment, to personal property, in marriage, and in family, women still face significant challenges.
She called for concerted efforts at the global level towards ending all forms of discrimination and inequality against women and the vulnerable.
Mrs Sulola Onyeama, Wife of Nigeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs praised Nigerian women for their resilience, and for being very active across all sectors.
Onyeama urged the women to remain committed, strong, and not be discouraged. (NAN)