The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Princess Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire has advocated the joint efforts of all stakeholders to address the challenge of poverty among women.
Princess Orelope-Adefulire, a former Deputy Governor in Lagos State, said this in a statement in commemoration of this year’s International Women’s Day (IWD) with the theme; “Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world.”
She noted that just like in the other parts of the world, COVID-19 had exacerbated gender inequalities in Nigeria, especially among the poor, with many women finding it difficult to cater for their families as a result of the loss of their livelihoods as engendered by the pandemic.
Princess Orelope-Adefulire observed that Federal Government has positively responded to the challenge in various ways, citing the Special Cash Grant Project through which 135,000 women rural women across the 36 states of the country and the Federal Capital Territory are already benefitting from “one-off” grant of N20, 000 each.
In addition, Princess Orelople-Adefulire noted that the President had at the inception of COVID-19 in Nigeria directed the expansion of the Social Safety Net Register to accommodate more beneficiaries of the government’s cash transfer programme while women are also major beneficiaries of the various initiatives under the N2.3 trillion economic stimulus plan of the administration.
She added that while COVID-19 has made many women poorer, it has been established that SDGs cannot be achieved without tackling the issues of poverty and gender inequality.
“This means all hands must be on deck to end the poverty among women as parts of efforts to ensure no one is left behind through sustainable initiatives targeted at job creation and expansion of economic activities across the country,” the presidential aide said.
She therefore urged other stakeholders to join the battle to tackle poverty among women, especially in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Even as I commend President Muhammadu Buhari over these initiatives which are consistent with his national vision of lifting 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in 10 years, I will urge other stakeholders to join in the efforts to ensure that more of our women are brought into the mainstream of social-economic activities in Nigeria,” she said.