Mrs Ifeoma Anagbogu, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Women Affairs (FMWA), says women and children are the one’s worse hit by the lockdown, occasioned by COVID-19 pandemic.
Anagbogu stated this at the technical session of the 20th Virtual National Council Meeting on women affairs, on Wednesday in Abuja.
The theme of the meeting is: “Gender-Based Violence: A shadow in a pandemic and a call to an end.”
The permanent secretary noted that the theme was apt, given the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic which, had constituted a great threat to the socio-economic development of Nigeria.
According to her, women and children are most adversely affected by the pandemic because of the lockdown of the economy and social activities, aimed at curtailing the spread of the virus.
“Many women and the girl-child are being raped, some even to death. Some women have lost their source of livelihood and self-dignity,” she said.
Anagbogu said that others were completely displaced; adding that the virtual zoom meeting of the council was to map out strategic plans to address the ugly occurrences.
She said that as technocrats, the technical session was strategic in preparing the grounds to critically examine various policy initiatives.
She, however, said the council had been charged with an enormous responsibility of ensuring that only relevant policies and programmes that would enhance sustainable economic recovery of its clientele, were focused on.
This, she said was aimed at reviewing the status of implementation of actions; taking a holistic view of the challenges and lessons from past experiences; as well as discussing the way forward to ensure the achievement of the targeted goals.
Anabogu, therefore, said interactions, discussions, and generation of the necessary information at the meeting would guide the council to initiate and implement far-reaching policies to strengthen the country’s institutions.