AFRICAN UNION COMMISSION (AUC) CIVIL SOCIETY CONSULTATIVE MEETING ON THE NEW GENDER STRATEGY 2017-2021

RECOMMENDATIONS

We, representatives of Civil Society Organization (CSOs) promoting gender equality and accountability for women’s rights in Africa, participants to the “African Union Commission (AUC) Consultative Meeting on the New Gender Strategy 2017-2021, from 27-28 October 2017, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia organized by Gender is My Agenda Campaign (GIMAC) Network in partnership with Women Gender and Development Directorate (WGDD) of the African Union Commission and Action Aid International;

 

WELCOME the development of the AU gender strategy for the period 2017 -2021which is in line with AU Assembly/AU/Decl.5 (XXV), Twenty-Fifth Ordinary Session, 2015, Johannesburg, South Africa, on aligning policies with Agenda 2063 and the African Union Commission’ approval to design a new strategy for gender equality and women’s empowerment in 2016;

 

ACKNOWLEDGE the invitation of diverse Civil Society Organizations. Media, Research Institutions and other Women’s Rights Organizations who are key in realizing the implementation of this strategy at all levels to contribute, participate and shape the new AU gender strategy including assessing the capacity requirements for its implementation, monitoring tools, harmonization with other frameworks and plans for its operationalization;

 

RECOGNISING that this process is timely in view of leveraging the gains made by the AUC on advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment on the continent through policy frameworks that include the Solemn Declaration on Gender Equality in Africa (SDGEA), Maputo Protocol and other ground breaking and gender responsive initiatives, the SDI tool for monitoring;

 

SUPPORT the ongoing AUC reform and call for strong integration and institutionalization of gender throughout all structures, policies and processes. In light of this, WE REQUEST for the mobilization of resources and a fund that will address women’s empowerment and accelerate the realization of gender commitments;

 

COMMIT ourselves to support AU Women, Gender and Development Directorate towards the realization of the AU gender strategy as partners in the development through to implementation.

 

We call the AU Gender Directorate mandated with the development of this strategy to focus on the following key priorities:

 

  1. Women Peace and Security– recognizing existing continental, regional, national and local level efforts on UNSCR1325 and follow up instruments;
  2. Securing Rights and Wellbeing of Women; eliminating all forms of GBV, harmful traditional practices and norms (child marriages, female genital mutilation, teenage pregnancies), access to comprehensive Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights, and addressing HIV& AIDS;
  3. Women’s Agriculture, Environment and Climate Justice – Holistic approach and models across the value chains to transform women’s status, labor saving technologies and innovations;
  4. Women’s Leadership, Governance and Decision-making – at all levels taking into account transformative and intergenerational leadership in both public and private sectors;
  5. Quality Education, Training, and capacity building– founded on African Pan African values and principles and advancing Science Technology, Engineering and Mathematics ( STEM);
  6. Women’s Economic Empowerment and justice – especially advancement in macro-economics, infrastructure, energy, technology and financial services, reducing,  and redistributing unpaid care work, gender pay gap and inequalities, access and control of productive resources.

 

We urge the AU Gender Strategy to incorporate the following substantive cross-cutting approaches and values as drivers of change towards achieving gender equality in Africa:

 

  1. Accountability to women’s human rights, justice, the rule of law and commitments as defined in the Solemn Declaration SDGEA, Maputo Protocol, Agenda 2063 and Agenda 2030;
  2. Mobilization and leadership of women and girls, thus adopting an inter-generational approach on the content of the issues;
  3. Adequate resource allocation, investment in women and girls and implementation of special temporary measures and innovative technologies;
  4. Strengthening the gender institutions and mechanisms at the African Union, regional, national and local levels:
  5. Fostering safe, secure and open space for civic engagement and women’s participation;
  6. Closing the gender data gaps through implementation of the Solemn Declaration Index and AU Gender Scorecard for monitoring and evaluating progress on gender equality;
  7. Addressing structural and systematic barriers that continuously perpetuate gender inequality and low status of women and girls in Africa.
  8. A holistic approach which includes addressing the intersections between patriarchy, unequal access to power and resources, and socially constructed norms, and failed economic models.,

 

APPRECIATE   the continued recognition by AUC that gender and youth are central to development and WE ASK for support for strengthening of the AU Gender Directorate’s in implementing its mandate and coordination mechanisms and continued support to civil society.

 

Dated at Addis Ababa this 28th Day of October 2017

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C21ST @COP23

Centre for 21st Century Issues (C21st) is on ground with other stakeholders who truely  belive in genuine solutions to address the menace of climate change at COP23.

C21st as a member of Women and Gender Constituency will work closely with the feminist bloc, Demand Climate Justice, Pan African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA) and ACCESS to influence  lobby  and advocate for a gender just outcomes from the COP23 negotiations.

C21st is committed to pursuing all the key demands of the Women and Gender constituency which includes,  adopt a robust  gender action plan, deliver on finance, Ensure climate solutions are gender just, promote energy democracy and protect ecological food systems among others.

Climate March 2
C21st @ the #ClimateMarch COP23

 

Already C21st has  participated in the climate march of 5th November, 2017 under the feminist bloc and also joined the climate warriors at the englande coal mine to offer prayers to the activists. C21st also participated in the WGC stategy meeting which held on 5th of November 2015.

 

WGC Strategy Meeting
WGC Strategy Meeting

 

There are other issues and vents  which are very important to move climate change work at the national level  in Nigeria which will be followed closely.  Some of them are; UNFCCC Gender Action Plan, Climate Law and Governance, climate Change and Agriculture, Sustainable Energy for All,  and climate Finance.

IMG-20171107-WA0001

C21st will be active on twitter with important tweet messages. Watch out for our #hashtags  #MindTheGap, #WomenClimateJustice, #OurSolutions and  #WomenDefendCommons

Feminist COP 23

 

 

Strengthening The Capacity of Women Organizations to Deliver on Gender and SDGs in Nigeria

 

 

 

Participants@ the training

Overtime, various attempts have been made to reduce the level of poverty in Africa, improve women’s socio-economic status, and ensure their access to land, water, sanitation and energy but it always appears no significant results have been achieved. The efforts seem not trickling down to the women on the ground

One of the programs that has enabled countries to measure the impacts of development efforts in recent times is the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) which has now metamorphosed into the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and or the 2030 Agenda

The 2030 Agenda includes 17 goals and 169 targets aimed to transform our world by eradicating poverty and any cruelty that demeans human dignity. It is a plan of action for people, planet and prosperity which is expected to be achieved by year 2030. It is hoped that all countries and stakeholders acting in collaborative partnership will work towards the achievement of the SDGs without leaving anyone behind.

 

Ms Akosa Training participant

The Centre for 21st Century (C21st) and Echoes of Women in Africa (ECOWA) in partnership with Women Environmental Programme (WEP) organized a one day step down training on Gender and the SDGs. The training is part of the activities under the project “Women CSOs Networking to Realize the Sustainable Development Goals”, also called “Women2030 Project,” funded by the European Commission. The project is also being implemented in other countries of the world by other partner organizations namely: Women Engage for a common Future (WECF), Gender and Water Alliance (GWA), Global Forest Coalition (GFC), and Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development (APWLD).

 

The workshop which held on 18th June, 2017 at the conference hall of West Africa Network for Peace building (WANEP) drew participation from women and gender focused NGOs, local and indigenous women  different Civil Society Organizations.

The overall objective of the workshop was to ensure that Women 2030 project builds a base in Africa that will ensure women’s needs are addressed. This was done through emphasizing the importance of gender for policy advocacy and SDGs, movement building, organizational management and the use of social media in gender and SDGs advocacy. Advocacy can be done for particular issues including the SDGs.

The training was interactive and facilitators engaged participants in group work. Skills and what participants do on SDGs were mapped out at the training. This was to help them identify their issues and take action appropriately.

 

CSOs who participated in the training  easily identified the gender and SDGs areas where their organizations have been working, the advocacy approaches they are using; which range from visible approach such as community mobilization and media campaigns to less visible approach such as advocacy letters and research.  They were also able to note the advocacy skills that stand them out and the ones they need. They expressed desire to improve their writing, mobilization, communication and research skills; all tools needed for effective advocacy on gender and SDGs. This information will enable the facilitators assist them more on the.

Apart from the fact that participants at the training were exposed to indepth knowledge on gender and SDGs and how their organizations can impact the grassroots, government and the private sector successfully, other significant features of the Women 2030 programme is to help emerging CSOs stabilize and also help with organizational development, sub-grant to those working and doing what aligns with 2030 project and those who have grafting skills in writing shadow report will be engaged.

Participating CSOs were content with the skills and awareness imbued in them in other to enable them forge alliances that will bring about the impactful implementation of the SDGs in Nigeria.

Ms. Damilola Adeoye

Program Officer

Centre for 21st century Issues (C21st)

 

 

 

 

Participants in group work session

 

 

C21ST Train Low fee Private School Educators On School Development Plan

Centre for 21st century Issues (C21st) in partnership with Coalition of Private School Associations held a one day Teachers training on School development plan on Saturday,  22nd of April, 2017 for educators of low fee private schools in Ojo Local Government Area of Lagos state.  The objective of the training was to build the capacity of educators on how to prepare  school development plans that will ensure improvement in quality outcomes of their students

Low fee schools  are categorized as schools with tuition that is less than twenty five thousand naira per annum and accounts for about 70% of basic education in Lagos State. This training  became imperative following findings from a series of forums convened in Ojo and Alimosho Local government Area which revealed that most of the educators do not know and have  a school development plan.

The training is part of the project  “Community Engagement in Low Fee Private Schools”  being undertaken by C21st on behalf of  Developing effective Education Nigeria (DEEPEN).  It is a project that mobilizes  education stakeholders such as parents, proprietors, teachers, community groups and associations in quarterly community forums to address quality outcomes in Low cost fee schools in Lagos state.

During the training , Mr. Adeyemi,  an expert in school improvement  service defines School Development Plan as a blueprint or master plan for improving schools and is centred on realistic analysis of the current situation of the school.

He further enunciated the significance of low fee private schools in filling the gaps created in basic education due to inadequate number of  public schools to cater for the ever growing population of school age children in Lagos . The schools according to him help meet the needs of high population of children seeking basic education in Lagos State. Mr. Adebayo explained that SDP identifies and prioritizes key area for school improvement.

He also mentioned the importance of School Self Evaluation (SSE) in any development plan. The SSE is to identify needs in the school and find immediate and possible solutions to them. The needs may range from improved school finance, professional training for teachers and Head teachers, better accountability to stakeholders, better parent participation in school activitiesand provision of necessary school facilities etc.This will enable the school management place in order of priority the problem they want to solve first instead of trying to solve all the problems at thesame time which may not be realistic. He pointed that SSE is not for proprietors alone or few people but for anybody who brings his or her child to school.

The facilitator cited teachers, pupils, proprietors, community members and religious leaders as relevant stakeholders who must be involved in School Self Evaluation. They have responsibilities to lead and make decisions in some activities in the SDP, and although the PTA executives may not have sufficient understanding in doing SDP, the proprietor has the responsibility to provide them with adequate information on what to do. There is need to constantly report SDP so as to ensure accountability and confidence building. Trainees were additionally taught how to keep standard school record and save cost by collecting locally available resources as teaching aids for learning.

Participants were also enlightened on Peer-to-Peer Constant learning which is when teachers meet regularly at about two weeks interval to cross-fertilize ideas and exchange views on how to improve and at the same time learn from one another.

The capacity building workshop was very practical and interactive as participants worked in groups with free handouts that include action plan template for cost determination to solve problems. They demonstrated real life occurrences which they are expected to replicate in their schools. It is anticipated that the training will help improve learning outcome in low fee private schools.

Damilola  Adeoye

Project Coordinator

Women Reject EU’s Interference In The Africa Renewable Energy Initiative

 

African women reject the European Union’s unnecessary meddling in Africa’s Renewable Energy Initiative (AREI).  African women are very concerned at the manner in which some European countries, France in particular, influenced some African leaders to hastily approve projects without having a transparent process with social, environmental and gender criteria in place.

 

At a board meeting in March in Conakry, the European Commission and France in collusion with a few African countries repackaged existing European Union projects for Africa, but which did not originate from Africa, as first batch of projects to be approved by AREI.

 

The way and manner these projects were introduced and approved- by bypassing AREI’s process being developed for social and Environmental criteria- is a very negative sign, setting the entire process off on a negative footing, refusing African people’s transparent decision making, and entirely against the principles by which AREI was created.

 

African women insist that European Union cannot dictate for Africans over any issue especially the one concerning universal access to clean, appropriate and affordable energy for all.

 

Women are particularly concerned about the unnecessary interference by European Union and France particularly as it can jeopardize the noble objective of AREI in providing people-centered and gender responsive clean energy solutions capable of addressing the chronic energy poverty which affects women in Africa disproportionately.

 

African women join their voices with other Civil Society Organizations in Africa to condemn the undue interference of European Union in AREI. African women stand for a strong and independent AREI, with full and meaningful participation of women’s organizations in all levels of the decision-making processes.

 

For and on behalf of African women

 

Ms Priscilla Achakpa, Executive Director, Women Environment Program (WEP), Collette Benoudji Coordinator  Association Lead Tchad and Ms Titilope Akosa, Executive Director, Centre for 21st Century Issues (C21st)

 For further information:

Centre For 21st Century Issues (C21st)

6, Balogun Street, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria

Email: titiakosa@gmail.com

 

Chairman’s Opening Remarks on the Occasion of the Celebration of the International Women’s Day Organized by C21st and GIPI at the Bon Hotel Grand Pela, Abuja, March 8th 2017

 

Protocol

I am delighted to welcome you to this occasion –the celebration of the International Women’s Day. It is a day that calls to question the essence of life without justice. Justice for the part of humanity, the Female Gender, that has been described over time as ‘poor, pregnant and powerless’. This description is apt when one recalls the plight of women in conflict ridden parts of the world; who as victims of rape, they have high vulnerability to debilitating diseases, limited or no reproductive health rights, poor access to health care, bear the burden of care for legitimate and unwanted children among others. They are simply victims of violence, with attendant traumatic consequences.

Ladies and gentlemen, I invite you to imagine what happens to the girl-child that goes through these harsh experiences. Imagine that as a child, she becomes a mother. Imagine that she is denied parental care. Imagine that her access to education is truncated. Imagine that her life dreams and ambitions are shattered. Imagine her on the street, in the IDP camp or in captivity as a sex slave to her captors. We can go on and on.

Consider the plight of the African woman, in stable but deprived communities. Imagine that the African woman, with her little children, girls and boys have to wake up early and trek long distances to fetch water for household needs. Imagine that she has to fetch firewood from the forest to prepare meals for the household. Imagine that she has to return to the market arena, either as a petty trader, hawker or scavenger; to earn a little to contribute to the family economy. Imagine the hardship she goes through to send her child to school. Imagine the pains she goes through, as the plague of unemployment looms over her husband and educated children. The Gbagyi woman belongs here too.

But she has peculiar experiences. It is this woman that has borne the burden of the nation from Minna to Zungeru; from Jere to Kaduna; from Toto to Abuja since the formation of Nigeria. These places have geo-political relevance as seat of power either to the colonial or federal governments. The wood that she carries on her shoulders has now become her official complaint about balkanization and neglect. She is bewildered as successive governments have misapplied extant laws on land use, the federal character, resettlement, urban renewal to diminish her economic fortunes. It is this woman that lost her children to careless drivers on the palatial highways of Abuja as they returned home from school. She agonizes over the fact that she is told that in Abuja, her entire family does not have franchise for self-governance; she agonizes that there has been a longstanding conspiracy to block her access to means of production and national wealth. In her existential trauma, she cries out needs to be heard.

GIPI remains highly indebted to Ms Della Ilenre for her sensitivity to these issues and utilizing the opportunity offered by the Centre for 21st Century Issues (C21st) to mobilize sponsorship for today’s event from the International Women’s Forum Peru. The case she made was for the Gbagyi Woman –the need to give her a voice. She was inspired by her late father, Pa Alfred Ilenre, may his soul rest in peace. GIPI met him briefly yet he left an indelible mark on us as a true nationalist. In addition, Della has a mentor, Titilope Akosa, Executive Director of C21st who has made invaluable contributions to the success of today’s event. We thank her most sincerely.

Prof. Andrew Zamani

 

Goodwill Message Delivered By Hon. Minister For Women Affairs ( Nigeria) At the 2o17 International Women’s Day celebration Organized By C21st And Gbayi Indigenous Peoples Initiative

Protocol

  1. It gives me great joy to be part of this important occasion tagged; “The need to give Gbagyi Indigenous women a voice” aimed at creating awareness for the overall wellbeing of Gbagyi indigenous women in Federal Capital Territory. This seminar as the name implies will serve as a facilitating factor by connecting Gbagyi indigenous women and their community to the national and international frameworks for articulating and enlightening them on the need to advocate for their rights as indigenous people of Federal Capital Territory and to maintain and strengthen their own institutions, cultures and traditions.

2.The Federal Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development has the mandate to co-ordinate all activities that are aimed at protecting and promoting the welfare of all Nigerian women by enhancing their abilities to realize their full potentials in various fields of human endeavours.

  1. It is very important to sensitize and build the capacity of FCT indigenous women on the preservation of their indigenous knowledge and how to use it for the benefit of their communities and the future generations, according to the Sustainable Development Goals 11 (SDG 11) on the need to make cities inclusively safe, resilient and sustainable.
  2. It is quite disheartening to note that Gbagyi Indigenous women lack knowledge, capacity, solidarity and a collective sense to organize an initiative in order to manage their resources. Also, they are the voiceless and less dominant in the city due to lack of political and socio-economic participation.
  3. It is my honest deposition to state that my ministry is already involved in the course of providing an enabling environment that can give women a voice in the society.
  4. In this regards, I sincerely want to assure you that the Ministry of Women Affairs will always identify with such laudable project like this to uplift the status of Gbagyi indigenous women and the overall Nigerian woman.
  5. Finally, I wish to appreciate the effort of the organizers of this great event and also the development partners and other stakeholders for your encouragement towards addressing and breaking the long silence of the Gbagyi Indigenous women of the Federal Capital Territory and helping them to be heard.
  6. Thank you all for listening.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Impacts Of Mecury On Human Health And The Environment

In our efforts as human beings to improve our standard of living, we consequently increase our industrial activities. These activities release pollutants into our environment.One of these pollutants that are toxic to human health and the environment is mercury.

Mercury is an extremely poisonous chemical element with symbol Hg. Though it can be changed into solid or gas at suitable temperature, it is the only metal that is liquid at room temperature. In its physical state, mercury appears appealing in shiny silver-white form and it conducts electricity due to its very high surface tension.

Sources

Mercury exists naturally through volcanic activity, weathering of rocks, that is, the normal breakdown of minerals in rocks,and water movement. It also occurs through human activities such asartisanal small-scale gold mining (ASGM); a prevalent mining process in Nigeria, coal-fired power plants, industrial fugitive emissions, oil and gas processing industry and cement production. These are major activities thatemitmercury into the atmosphere and release it into soil and waterthereby causing environmental pollution in Nigeria.

Mercury can be used to make scientific instruments such as thermometers and barometers. Also, because of its ability to conduct electricity, it is used in electric switches and as relays in equipment. The vapor in mercury is used in streetlights and fluorescent lamps.  Mercury readily combines with other metals like gold, zinc and silver to form alloys; also called amalgams. These amalgams are used to create dental filings, prolong the life of dry battery cells made with zinc and used to help extract gold from its ore.

Other sources of mercury includeskin-lightening products, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, industrial boilers,agricultural fertilizers, waste disposal and incineration.

 

Health Impacts   

Mercury is a major public health concern because it is inimical to human health.  Exposure to the toxic element and its compound can cause damage to the brain, disrupt the nervous system and affect the lungs, kidneys and eyes. It also results in allergic reactions such as headaches, tiredness and skin rashes. Even in small amounts, mercury impacts the reproductive organs negatively by causing sperm damage, birth defects and miscarriages.

Nearly all fish and shell fish contain traces of mercury but some have higher concentration that may be harmful to pregnant women; however, for dietary purpose, pregnant women can still eat fish and shell fish that are low in mercury.

Additionally, the continuous use of skin lightening products that contain mercury poses a high health risk to people who use them. The accumulation of mercury in the body through the skin can damage the liver and kidney.

Environmental Impacts   

Mercury and its compound are non-biodegradable. So, they persist in the environment for an extended period killing important microorganisms in the environment.

Mercury is significantly harmful due to its ability for long-range transportation. It can travel globally through air, soil and water bodies.

Mercury and its compounds also have adverse impact on the environment as they bio-accumulate in the ecosystem. Mercury accumulates in organisms through different transmission pathways like the food chain.

 

Role Of Nigerian Government 

Nigerian government through the Federal Ministry of Environment is involved in a variety of activities to phase out mercury. These include promoting use of clean energy in industrial activities, enforcing the proper use and disposal of mercury containing products,discouraging the use of mercury in gold mining, developing laws to protect the health of Nigerian citizens and finding lasting alternatives to the use of mercury containing products.

In order to phase out mercury, Nigeria became a signatory to the Minamata convention on mercury; a global environment treaty, on 10th October, 2013.  The convention is aimed at promoting the “use of alternatives and Best Available Techniques (BAT) and Best Environmental Practices (BEP) across a wide range of products, processes and industries where mercury is used, released or emitted.”  This, in the end, will help protect human health and the environment from anthropogenic emissions and releases of mercury and its compound.

The government in a series of strategic plans and with support from Global Environment Facility (GEF), United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) is working assiduously to implement the Minamata Convention Initial Assessment (MIA) project. This will assist Nigeria to assess its institutional capability, identify gaps in policy and legislative framework, identify intervention sources and raise awareness among relevant stakeholders. The success of the MIA will serve as a basis for the country to ratify the Minamata convention requirements.

To further the course of raising awareness among Nigerian citizens, the Federal Ministry of Environment at a recent workshop in Lagos engaged the media and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) on the Minamata convention on mercury. The awareness raising workshop was to enlighten participants on the Minamata convention, and develop strategic and realistic tactics to disseminate information on mercuryto the populace.

The role of the media and NGOs cannot be over-stressed as the sector is the mouthpiece of the people, if fierce awareness is raisedsuch as it was done with NAFDAC number on products during Professor Dora Akunyili’s tenure at the agency whereby illiterates and educated people became aware of the importance of NAFDAC’s certification on a product, Nigeria is on a good path to fulfill its obligation to the ratification of the Minamata convention while also contributing to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals 3, 6, 9 and 14.

 

Ms Damilola Adeoye

Program officer,

Centre For 21st Century Issues

 

 

 

 

African Women Congratulate Their Super Shero –Ms. Amina Mohammed, United Nations Deputy Secretary General

19 th December, 2016

On behalf of Nigerian women and indeed, African women, we heartily congratulate Amina J. Mohammed, the Honourable Minister of Environment, Nigeria, for a well earned and deserved appointment as the new Deputy Secretary General of the United Nations. This is another testimony to her great and avowed commitment to the people and the planet.

The exemplary life of service of Ms. Amina Mohammed since her days as the National moderator of Civil Society Action Coalition On Education for All (CSACEFA) to her meritorious service in coordinating the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), her recent role in catalyzing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and her current transformative leadership as Nigeria’s Minister of the Environment; have demonstrated unwavering commitment, dedication and passion to the cause of humanity.

In all these positions Ms. Amina Mohammed has inspired us women to strive to be the best and aim for the stars. We have drawn inspiration from her leadership, encouragement and wealth of experience. We are therefore not surprised that her dedication, passion and doggedness has propelled her to achieve the feat of been the first woman in Nigeria to attain this new position.

Her latest accomplishments are indeed no mean feat; it is a signal to all women everywhere that women can shatter the glass ceiling and at the same time a clarion call for the enthronement of women’s leadership in the world.

Assuredly, we women are solidly behind her, we stand by and support her to succeed in this new position.

We commend President Mohammed Buhari and Nigeria people for reposing confidence in Ms. Amina Mohammed to take on the Position of the Deputy Secretary General of the United Nations.

While we appreciate the President for appointing Amina Mohammed, we are very much aware that she deserves it, we take this opportunity to call for more openings and opportunities for smart and hardworking Nigerian and African women into appointive leadership positions at all levels.

Congratulations again! We are proud of you and your achievements.

Continue to climb new heights of success! You are unstoppable!

Priscilla M. Achakpa-Women Environmental Programme, Nigeria/Organizing Partner-Women’s Major Group

For and on behalf of Nigerian and African Women’s Major Group

Endorsed by

1. Ms. Titilope Akosa – Centre for 21st Century Issues (C21st) – Nigeria

2. Sascha A Gabizon- Women Engage for a Common Future- International and Organizing Partner, Women Major Groups (WMG)

3. Anne Addeh- Women and Youths Environmental Safety and Empowerment Organisation a.k.a EWAY for Development

4. Ms. Ugbaa Sewuese Mary –Angel support Foundation – Nigeria

5. Thelma Munhequete – Africa foundation for Sustainable Development- Mozambique

6. Mrs. Semia Gharbi: Association de l’Education Environnementale pour les Futures Générations: AEEFG, -Tunisia

7. Amb Caroline Usikpedo – Niger Delta Women’s movement for Peace and DevelopmentNigeria

8. Louisa Ono Eikhomun- Echoes of Women in Africa (ECOWA) Nigeria

9. Judith Kateule- Africa Foundation for Sustainable Development (AFSD)-Zambia

10. Attah Benson- Community Emergency Response Initiative, Nigeria

11. Juliana Agema-Charles and Doosurgh Abaagu Foundation, Nigeria

12. Felicia Onibon- Change Managers International Network, Country Coordinator Nigeria, Ghana and Kenya GEC

13. Omoyemen Lucia Odigie-Emmanuel- Centre for Human Rights and Climate Change Research, Nigeria

14. Zenabou Segda- Women Environmental Programme, Burkina Faso

15. TSONYA – ACAKPO ADDRA Brigitte- Women Environmental Programme, Togo

16. Elizabeth Jeyol- Gender and Environmental Risk Reduction Initiative (GERI), Nigeria 17. Cécile NDJEBET Presidente REFACOF/Coordonnatrice Nat. Cameroon

18. Gertrude Kabusimbi Kenyangi- Support for Women in Agriculture and Environment (SWAGEN), Uganda

19. Mrs. Hawa Nibi Amenga-Etego- GrassRootsAfrica, Ghana

20. Juliet Wombo-Kwande Sisters Foundation, Nigeria

21. Nnenna Nwakanma- Africa Regional Coordinator, World Wide Web Foundation

22. Colette BENOUDJI, Lead Tchad

23. Akurut Violet Adome (Hon) Member of Parliament Uganda and Founder Member and Chair Katakwi Grassroots Women Development Initiative (KAWODI) Uganda.

24. Ndivile Mokoena- GenderCCSA, South Africa

25. Jennifer Amejja- National Association of Professional Environmentalists (NAPE), Uganda

26. Diel Mochire Mwenge- Provincial PIDP Nord-Kivu, REPALEF/RDC au Nord-Kivu, RDC 27. Hon. Winifred Masiko- Rural Gender and Development Association, Uganda

28. Kemi Oluyide- Centre for Grassroots and Environmental Concerns, Nigeria

29. Nkiruka Nnaemego-Fresh and Young Brains Development Initiative, Nigeria

30. Hanna Gunnarsson, Women Engage for a Common Future Deutschland 31.

Mary Nyasimi- Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS), Kenya

32. Winnie Lichuma- Chairperson, National Gender and Equality Commission,Kenya

33. Rose Pélagie MASSO, Coordonnatrice Adjointe Cameroun Ecologie (Cam-Eco)

34. Veronica Jakarasi- Ministry of Environment, Water and Climate, Zimbabwe

35. Mirabel Edozie – South – South Professional Women Association, Nigeria.

36. Daisy Alero Emoekabu- Climate  Change  Policy  PhD  Researcher,  University  of  Kent,  and  Green  Patriots  for  Environmental  Protection  &  Sustainability,  Nigeria

37. Bose Ironsi-  Women’s Rights and Health Project (WRAHP), Nigeria

38. Ruth During- Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council(WSSCC), Nigeria

39. Lucy Mulenkei- Indigenous Information Network, Kenya

40. Dr, Keziah Awosika -Women Law and Development Centre (WLDCN)- Nigeria

41. Alexandrial Allen- foundation Starters – Nigeria

42. Nancy Olatunji-International Living Africa Urban and Environment Project – Nigeria

43. Vivian Ifeoma Emesowum, Grassroot People and Gender Development Center – Nigeria For further information:

1. Women Environmental Programme (WEP) Block E Flat 2 Anambra Court, Gaduwa Housing Estate, after Apo Legislative Quarters Abuja, Nigeria info@wepnigeria.net; wep2002@hotmail.com

2. Centre For 21st Century Issues (C21st) 6, Balogun Street, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria titiakosa@gmail.com

AN URGENT CALL FOR THE ADOPTION OF THE LAGOS WASH POLICY FOLLOWING THE CANCELLATION OF THE MONTHLY ENVIRONMENTAL SANITATION EXERCISE

 

The Advocacy and Campaigns Coalition (ACC) is a platform of Civil Society Networks in Lagos State working with other relevant stakeholders  to reduce mortality and morbidity from diarrhea in under 5 children within the framework of the WHO /UNICEF 7point plan for diarrhea control.

The attention of the ACC has been drawn to the recent cancellation of the monthly environmental sanitation exercise in Lagos state.

The ACC is disturbed by the reason of “present economic realities in the country” given for the cancellation. With due respect this apparent attempt to promote economic benefits above clean and healthy environment is capable of undermining people centered governance being promoted by the current administration in Lagos state.  The reality is that there cannot be economic viability without clean and healthy environment which impacts on the productivity of the people.

We are all the more concerned that the exercise was cancelled without any stop gap measure in place to preserve the gains of sound environmental sanitation, self discipline and strict adherence to standard hygiene rules and practices promoted in the last 20 years by the rested environmental sanitation exercise.

Of utmost concern is the inability of the government to muster enough political will in adopting the Lagos State Water Supply and Sanitation (WASH) Policy which has been in the pipeline for several years.

These portend grave consequences for public health and sustainable sanitation especially in the face of deteriorating state of public water supply and sanitation services in the state.

It is acknowledged  that hygiene practices are generally poor in the state due to inadequate access to portable  water (10% or roughly 2.1 Million people in Lagos  have access to potable water )  and sanitation services as well as moral decadence to the environment. This poor state of water and sanitation has contributed significantly to the high prevalence of preventable diseases such as diarrhea, cholera, malaria and typhoid.

Significantly, Lagos has the 2nd highest prevalence of diarrhea rate in South West Nigeria (7.5%) after Oyo state (9.2%) having an average diarrhea incidence of 13% or 520,000 cases per annum. These diseases also accounts for the rise in morbidity, mortality and absenteeism in schools and at work.

  • OUR DEMANDS
  • That Lagos State Governor uses his good office to as a matter of urgency adopt the draft Lagos State WASH Policy and roll out an effective implementation plan
  • That all relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) and stakeholders responsible for the review of environmental Laws of Lagos state speed up action on it and ensure the passage of the Law before the end of first quarter of 2017.
  • Regular updates should be given to the general populace with respect to progress on the passage of the harmonized environmental Laws.

Conclusion

It is incontestable that improvement in mortality rates from preventable diseases such as typhoid, diarrhea, cholera and malaria, etc., was because of improved standard of environmental sanitation. Thus, we believe that a well planned, coordinated and implemented environmental sanitation policy for disease prevention and control is what Lagos State needs at this time, given the megacity status of the state.

 

Ms Gbemisola Akosa

ACC Coordinator

The ACC comprises: Lagos State Gender Advocacy Team (LASGAT) / Centre for 21st Century Issues (C21st) (Gbemisola Akosa), Lagos State Civil Society Partnership (LACSOP) (Ayo Adebusoye), Youth WASH (Titilola Kazeem), National Orientation Agency (Aderemi Olaniyan), Partnership for Good Governance (Vivian Emesomwu), Climate Wednesday (Olumide Idowu), Child Protection Network (Ngozi Okoro), Network for Water and Sanitation (NEWSAN), ( Henry Adenigba), WASH Media Network (Michael Simire) and Community Coalition (Francis Ogunbanjo).