By KATO P. LADAN, Kaduna
Women in Kaduna State have demonstrated that they are capable of holding decision making positions.
Deputy Governor of Kaduna State, Dr. Hadiza Balarabe expressed this while launching the Coalition and presentation of the collaborative framework on increased women’s Leadership in COVID-19 response and recovery efforts in Kaduna State on Thursday March 25, 2021.
“Our Government in Kaduna believes in this and has demonstrated that women are capable of holding high and sensitive decision-making positions,” she said.
Represented by her SA on Legal Matters, Barrister Rabi Adamu Musa-Manchi, she described the launch of the coalition as a welcome development.
“The birth of this organisation will, doubtlessly, advance the ongoing campaign to give women the place they deserve in leadership and decision-making positions.
“On a global scale, concerns on the plight of women and girls are gaining ascendency and eliciting significant responses that are changing the landscape.
“Both states and non-state actors are uniting in voicing out support towards ending all forms of discrimination and violence against women and girls, advocating for their equal rights and advancing their political, economic and social empowerment,” she added.
She acknowledged the efforts of the members of the coalition for the response of the new wave of COVID 19 in Kaduna State.
“Distinguished guest, we are here today to officially launch the Women’s Coalition for COVID-19 response and to present the framework that will guide the activities of this group.
“The outcomes are appreciable, the progress is uneven and still below expectation.
“This is despite the evidences showing that societies where women participate in the economy advanced faster and experience accelerated growth as compared to those who exclude them.
“The International Monetary Fund (IMF), supported this position in its 2018 poly titled “pursuing women’s empowerment”, where it asserts that “when more won economies grow”. this proves that we cannot solve global challenges unless we participate fully in efforts to find solutions,” she emphasized.
Speaking further, she said that the Kaduna State Governor, Malam Nasir el-Rufai is a pacesetter in providing opportunities for women to lead.
“Our Governor demonstrates trust on women and has given many women opportunities to contribute to the development of the state, Our experience has proven that women, just like men, and in some cases, more than men, can drive positive changes through innovative and transformative leadership,” she added.
Dr. Balarabe said that as countries of the world continue to carry out COVID-19 response, the call for gender equality and inclusion remains as relevant as ever.
“In keeping with its principles of the current Government of Kaduna State, women have continued to drive our COVID-19 response and interventions from the beginning of the outbreak to date.
“Our Emergency Operations Committee (EOC) that drives the health response is headed by the commissioner of health, Dr. Amina Baloni with many women as members.
“Similarly, the state standing committee on COVID-19 is chaired by the Deputy Governor and has all the female commissioners in the state cabinet as members,” she said.
The Deputy Governor said that the CoronaVirus pandemic has threatened public health and put health systems of countries under great pressure.
“The fallout has made the economies of the world to come under shocks, substantially. as the international monetary fund and the world Bank observed, there is no economy that is spared from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“For Kaduna State Government all our responses were motivated by the overriding need to protect our people and safeguard the health and safety of every citizen.
“Thus, we invested significantly to strengthen our healthcare system to raise our capacity to identify, trace, test and manage persons infected by the disease, while continuing to render our normal health care service in our health facilities.
“Amid this health and economic crisis fueled by the pandemic women have demonstrated their skills, knowledge and networks to effectively support in COVID-19 response and recovery efforts, demonstrating the importance of women’s leadership.
“The birth of the Women’s Coalition for the new wave of COVID-19 response will provide another layer of support to government in stemming the tide of COVID-19 and its attendant effects on public health and in pursuing recovery. I am particularly happy to see that constitution of this coalition draws membership from the public and private sector.
“We believe this group will play a supportive role in helping government carry out its responses,” she stressed.
She assured of the support of the Kaduna State Government believes in partnership and collaborations.
“So, our doors are always opened to work with organisations like yours for the development and promotion of the welfare of our people.
“This perfectly aligns with our development agenda of putting people first, making lives better and leaving no one behind,” she further assured.
She commended the leadership and members of the women’s coalition for the new wave of COVID-19 response for the initiative.
“I also want to thank the UN women for facilitating the birth of this initiative, which I believe will make a positive impact a achieve its objectives
“I would like to first of all thank God for the privilege to be here as a member of the coalition for the response of COVID-19 in Kaduna State.
“I would also like to congratulate the convener of this coalition in person of Dr. Lydia Umar for a job well done,” she said.