By KATO P. LADAN, Kaduna
In its bid to project women’s meaningful participation and leadership in COVID-19 response and recovery efforts, the UN Women and Kaduna State, seeks to launch the Coalition of women and present the Collaborative Framework and Action Plan.
This was contained in a statement made available to our correspondent from the UN Women, which said that the launching will take place at the Bafra Hotel Kaduna on Thursday March 25, 2021.
It explained that launch of the Coalition will also feature the presentation of the Collaborative Framework and Action Plan on Increased Women’s Leadership in COVID-19 Response and Recovery Efforts in Kaduna State.
It said that it is aimed at advancing the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) Agenda and addressing key gender issues in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, by supporting state governments to prevent and respond to gender-based violence (GBV) and enhance women’s participation in leadership and decision-making.
“The Launch of the Coalition and Presentation of the Collaborative Framework and Action Plan is very essential in the successful implementation of this project, this launch will further amplify the need for more women’s meaningful participation and leadership in COVID-19 response and recovery efforts in Kaduna State,” it added.
It further explained that the COVID-19 pandemic has amplified pre-existing gender inequalities and revealed stark gaps in the status quo on gender equality in Nigeria, the deeply entrenched inequalities that are putting women at higher risk of the pandemic’s social and economic impact especially as women are in the front-line of care giving in response to the pandemic and thus more vulnerable to its impact.
“Despite the gendered impacts of the pandemic and the overrepresentation of women in frontline health-care roles, women are inadequately represented in decision-making and response planning mechanisms such as national and state COVID-19 task forces and response and recovery plans.
“UN Women has established a Coalition of 30 women leaders from the civil society, the private sector and government- executive and legislative in January 2021 in Kaduna State.
“The Coalition provides a platform to address the limited engagement between women-led organizations leading local response initiatives and women in the private sector and women in decision making spaces both at executive and legislative level to strengthen the contribution of women at all levels to Covid19 response and recovery efforts in the state.
“The Launch of the Coalition and presentation of the Framework is designed to amplify UN Women’s effort to increase the contribution of women from different sectors into government’s response and the recovery efforts in Kaduna State,” it added. The statement stressed that the high-level recognition in form of the public launch by representatives of government will increase the acceptance of the Coalition and its activities.
“This will also be an opportunity to get state’s input into the activities of the Coalition and strengthen relationship between the COVID19 Taskforce and the Coalition as well as with the Ministry of Human and Social services to enhance the sustainability of the initiative beyond the project duration,” it pointed out..
The United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) is partnering with the UK Government Foreign Commonwealth & Development Office to implement a project on Strengthening state capacities and women’s participation in COVID response and broader peace building initiatives Nigeria. With funding from the UK Government, the programme is being implemented in Bauchi, Plateau and Kaduna State.
The Strengthening State Capacities and Women’s Participation in COVID Response and Broader Peacebuilding Initiatives Project in Nigeria seeks to strengthen state capacities and women’s participation on COVID-19 response and broader peacebuilding initiatives through three pillars of engagement.
First, the project will seek to develop a costed model action plan for the effective implementation of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP) Act, piloted in Bauchi State.
Secondly, the project will seek to strengthen women’s role in dialogue, mediation and peace processes in Plateau and Kaduna State.
Thirdly, the project will establish a collaborative framework between women’s organizations and women in leadership to increase women’s meaningful participation in the COVID-19 response and recovery.
Dignitaries expected at the launch include: Deputy Governor of Kaduna State – H.E Hadiza Sabuwa Balarabe, UN Women Deputy Country Representative – Mr. Lansana Wonneh, Representative from the UK Government Foreign Commonwealth & Development Office, as well as Principal Officers from Kaduna State House of Assembly, Religious and Traditional Leaders.