Women for Justice and Integrity, a prominent advocacy group, has demanded for the inclusion of women in the recently constituted board of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
The demand is made in a statement by the spokesperson of the group, Mrs. Annabel Karibowei, and issued to newsmen in Abuja on Friday.
She expressed concern over the alleged
removal of a woman as chair of the board, only to be replaced by a man, which she said had further exacerbated the lack of gender diversity on the board.
Karibowei emphasized the importance of diversity and gender representation in decision-making bodies, while highlighting that women constituted a significant portion of the Nigerian population.
She said that women perspectives were vital in addressing the multifaceted challenges faced by the Niger Delta region.
She further said that the organisation worked tirelessly to ensure that the voices of women were heard and represented across various sectors of society.
“Gender inclusivity is not just a matter of principle; it is a necessity for effective governance and holistic development.
“Our nation thrives when all segments of society are adequately represented, and excluding women from such critical positions undermines the true potential of our nation.”
“Women for Justice and Integrity has been a staunch advocate for gender equality and equitable representation in various sectors.
“The organization has consistently championed women’s rights and their involvement in policy formulation and implementation,” she stressed.
Karibowei said that the demand underscored the need for transparent and fair processes in board appointments, and ensuring that merit and diversity were both given due consideration.
She called on government authorities to reevaluate the composition of the NDDC board and take proactive steps to rectify the gender imbalance.
She stated that removing woman from a leadership position and replacing her with a man sent a disheartening message to women across the nation.
According to her, the group expects that the least that can be done would have been to increase the representation of women on the board, not diminish it.
Karibowei said that Women for Justice and Integrity remained committed to fostering a society where all voices were heard, and every individual was given an equal opportunity to contribute to the development of the nation.
She said that the organization would continue to engage in constructive dialogue with relevant stakeholders and hopes for a swift and positive resolution to this matter.