Home News National Gender Policy will curb women’s challenges — Perm Sec

National Gender Policy will curb women’s challenges — Perm Sec


ABUJA –  Mrs Ibukun Odusote, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has said that the National Gender Policy for Agriculture would curtail the numerous challenges faced by women in agriculture.

Odusote stated this at a two-day stakeholders validation workshop on the Draft National Gender Policy on Thursday in Abuja.

The permanent secretary, who was represented by the Director, Special Duties, Mr Chudi Uwandu, said the policy would complement policies already in place to put the country on track to attain food security.

“The National Gender Policy for the Agriculture sector proposes new strategies aimed at scaling up women’s participation in agribusiness.

“Through access to land, financial stability and the removal of all encumbrances that affect the progress of women in agricultural business, the policy will complement other policies already in place to put the country on track to attain food security.’’

Odusote described the policy as a sure way of showcasing the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015.

She implored participants at the workshop to generate ideas that would enhance the performance of the  agriculture sector.

Earlier, the Special Adviser to the President on Gender Issues, Mrs Asmau Abdulkadir, observed that gender disparity was creating bottlenecks for national development.

Abdulkadir, while observing that women were largely manipulated by their male counterparts because they depend on them to survive, said that the policy was timely.

The special adviser urged participants to evolve clear-cut strategies for the implementation of the policy for the benefit of women.

She commended the Ministry of Agriculture for impacting positively on the lives of lives of rural dwellers, adding that if other ministries did the same, the country woulf fair better..

Also speaking, Mrs Karima Babangida, the Deputy Director, Gender and Youth in the ministry, said the ministry was committed to building a nation free from gender disparity.

She said the role of women was important as they constitute 70 per cent of the labour force.

She, however, expressed regret that less than five per cent of women had access to land, just as less than three per cent had access to credit.

Similarly,  less than four per cent had access to extension services while about 22 per cent had access to farm inputs.

Babangida said it was necessary to mainstream gender equality into the Agricultural Transformation Agenda (ATA) as it would complement the efforts of the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs.

In her remarks, Mrs Ifeoma Anyanwu, an Assistant Director and Head of  the Gender Unit, said when the policy becomes operational, development would be accelerated in rural areas and also reduce women’s vulnerability. (NAN)

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