By Boluwaji Obahopo— LOKOJA
Kogi State government has said it is stepping up efforts at achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, SDGs, also known as the Global Goals, GGs, adopted by all United Nations member-states in 2015.
Specifically, the government said it is targeting SDG goal 5 of granting women equality in the state, saying its decision to appoint women into key positions of leadership, governance and decision-making underscore its objective of meeting the SDG 5 goal.
Special Adviser to Governor Yayaha Bello on SDG, Mr Nasir Ohiani, stated this in Lokoja at a roundtable discussion on “The Role of Women in Peace Building and Governance in Kogi State” organised by the office of the SDG in collaboration with Mercy Corps.
Ohiani, among others, said: “Today’s programme will enable the women air their voices so that will can chart and implement policies that will make women equity possible.
“Our idea is to empower 30,000 women at the grassroots level of all the 239 wards. That is why we are partnering with organisation like Mercy Corps whom are doing community initiatives to promote peace (CIPP) in four of the council areas.”
On his part, Commissioner for Information and Communication, Kingsley Fanwo, said women were crucial to a peaceful society.
He said: “When women play their role effectively, there will be peace; such as is witnessed in Kogi State. The governor of the state had invested hugely in security.But beyond that, women are the practical reasons that make peace possible in the state.”
Also, Deputy Chief of Party, Mercy Corp who double as the coordinator of the CIPP project, Mr. Sanni Suleiman urged the three tiers of government to always involve women in critical positions, noting they are key to sustaining peace.
“Women must be given the rightful position. The population of women is almost 50 percent.
“There is no way you can take a decision by neglecting 50 percent of your population. We need women to drive governance and peace building.
“Therefore, there is a need to improve the capacity building of women and provide programme geared towards elevating and empowering women.”