FCT Senator Unveils NCLUDEHer Initiative For Women Empowerment, Inclusion

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In commemoration of this year’s Democracy Day, Senator representing FCT, Ireti Heebah Kingibe, has unveiled the NCLUDEHer Nigeria Initiative – a transformative agenda to foster sustainable democracy through women empowerment and inclusion across all spheres.

Nigeria ranks 130th out of 146 countries on the World Economic Forum’s Gender Gap Index, with low scores on educational attainment and political representation.

It is among the 10% of countries exhibiting the highest gender discrimination levels, according to the OECD’s Social Institutions and Gender Index, with “high” or “very
high” assessments across all evaluated categories.

These inequalities have led to
substantial macroeconomic losses in growth, income equality, and economic diversification.

The NCLUDEHer Nigeria initiative is a multisectoral intervention spearheaded by the Senate Committee on Women Affairs chaired by Senator Kingibe, to integrate and innovate inclusive development impact opportunities for gender responsive National Policy Action programs across
the public and private sectors, respectively.

This collaborative effort aims to foster sustainable democracy by addressing gender inequalities across all spheres of Nigerian society.

“A truly democratic society cannot thrive without the full participation and representation of women,” said the FCT Senator. “The NCLUDEHer Nigeria Initiative addresses multidimensional barriers and creates opportunities for women’s meaningful contribution to nation-building.”

Key NCLUDEHer priorities include: Promoting and protecting human rights for women and girls across all dimensions, ensuring universal access to quality healthcare, education, decent work, and social protection, addressing gender-based violence, harmful practices, and discrimination.

It also includes enhancing women’s leadership and decision-making roles, fostering sustainable partnerships to advance gender equality goals.

At the core of the initiative lies the NCLUDEHer Gender Equality Accord, a symbol of the Senate’s joint commitment to inclusive progress. The Accord represents a comprehensive framework outlining strategic priorities and actionable measures to
dismantle barriers and create opportunities for women and girls in Nigeria.

Senator Ireti Kingibe, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Women Affairs, stated that by harnessing the collective expertise and influence of the Senate Committees, transformative change can be driven.

She affirmed that the NCLUDEHer Accord embodies an unwavering collective dedication to empowering women and girls, which is essential for achieving sustainable development and a thriving democracy.

While the Accord will be formally introduced and signed later this year, the NCLUDEHer Nigeria initiative has already set in motion a paradigm shift in the nation’s approach to gender equality. It represents a multisectoral collaboration that recognises
the interconnectedness of various issues impacting womens empowerment, from poverty alleviation and institutional strengthening to financing with a gender lens.

By prioritizing women’s inclusion, the NCLUDEHer Nigeria initiative upholds fundamental human rights while unlocking the immense potential of Nigeria’s diverse and rapidly growing population.

The launch of the NCLUDEHer Nigeria initiative on Democracy Day signifies the nation’s commitment to inclusive governance, equitable development, and the realisation of women’s rights as a cornerstone of a thriving democracy.