By Dorcas Jonah
Mrs Gloria Shoda, the President of National Council for Women Societies (NCWS), has solicited partnership with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to empower women.
Shoda made the appeal when she led a delegation of NCWS to visit the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, on Thursday in Abuja.
She said women should have access to capital, credit, soft loans and other resources required to start business.
She called for the review of conditions that prevented women from tapping into available resources over the years.
The council president noted that women access less than five per cent of the special intervention fund, which was inadequate for verile entreprenuership.
According to her, the council needs women entrepreneurs to drive the country’s economy to greater heights, hence the need for CBN support.
She added that “we need to invest more in women.
“Former U.S. Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, said investing in women is not only the right thing to do, but the smart thing to do.
“Our nation is passing through a critical period of economic challenges, which we pray to overcome soon.
“We are determined to work with various agencies of the three tiers of government in the country to end this financial and economic crisis.”
The NCWS boss said the council was ready to support measures that could pull the country out of the current economic situation.
She said the council was also committed to implementing the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the African Union programme tagged “Agenda 2063″
In his response, Emefiele, represented by Mr Anthony Ifechikwu, the Director, Governor’s Department of CBN, said women were the bedrock of development in the society.
He said women were better managers of fund and facilities than men, adding that they were more honest than men.
Emefiele said that the concerns raised by the president of NCWS were not new to them at the CBN, adding that the bank was making constant efforts to address them.
He added that 60 per cent of the N220 intervention fund for farmers was set aside for women, noting that “empowering women means empowering the nation.”
The governor pledged that the bank would partner with the NCWS to improve the lives of women in Nigeria.