PDP Slams Senate over equal rights bill | Independent Newspapers Limited
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PDP Slams Senate over equal rights bill

Posted: Mar 19, 2016 at 1:00 am   /   by   /   comments (1)

Nicholas Uwerunonye

Leading opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party of Nigeria (PDP) has condemned recent actions of the Senate in shooting down a bill that sought gender equality.
This much can be gleaned from a release by Kema Chikwe, the National Woman Leader of the party, on Friday.
The woman leader expressed disappointment and displeasure over the dismissal of the Nigerian Gender and Equal Opportunities Bill by the Nigerian Senate on Tuesday.
According to her, the action, which she described as regressive, occurred at a critical time when the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) conference is currently holding in New York, USA. “The implication of throwing out the Gender and Equal Opportunities Bill is that the incidences of rape, domestic violence, maternal mortality, poverty etc, which have been ravaging our country will continue unchallenged. The dismissal of that bill essentially undermines the contributions Nigerian women are making towards our national development,” Chikwe said.
She added that the bill was not just about women, “It is centred around the survival of the family system in Nigeria. If that bill were passed, the greatest beneficiaries would have been the menfolk, who are undoubtedly the heads of families. Nigerian women have partnered with them in building stable homes and the society at large. Nigerian women have proved capacity to lead and capacity to follow in national development.
“Nigerian women are very conscious of positive Nigerian cultures and tradition but however, they propose to eliminate those factors that retard our socio-economic development to comparable international standards. I watched the debate and I pay tribute to some of the male senators who made very positive contributions in support of the bill for which the female senators fought hard but lost the battle,” Chikwe stated.
She further gave figures that tended to support her view. She stated, for instance, that women constitute more than 50 percent of the population of the country. But unfortunately, they are only a minute minority in both the National Assembly and State Houses of Assembly. “It is therefore no surprise that that bill was thrown out. That bill was about humanity and not about women”, she added.