“NO WOMAN SHOULD BE INFERIOR TO ANY MAN” Imo First Lady, Wife of Deputy Governor, Women Affairs Commissioner Lead Imo Women on Long Walk Against Gender-Based Violence.
Imo women, under different auspices and in their large numbers were led by the wife of the governor, Barr Mrs Chioma Uzodimma who was represented by wife of the deputy governor, Dr. Mrs Bola Njoku and Commissioner for Women Affairs and Vulnerable Group, lady Nkechinyere Ugwu, on a walk against gender-based violence, which started from Imo State House of Assembly complex to the state Government House.
The activism match was part of a 16- Day of “Activism Against Gender-Based Violence observed globally every 25th of November to 10th of December”.
Addressing the women, the deputy governor Prof. Placid Njoku, who spoke on behalf of the governor, made it clear that no woman should be made to feel inferior to any man.
He made it clear that the government led by Senator Hope Uzodimma, explicitly denounces violence against women and assured them of the state government total support for their activism and commitment towards the eradication of gender-based violence.
He said man and woman were created equal by God to complement each other and non is inferior to the other, adding that there is no reason to tolerate gender-based violence against women or even men and made it clear that any woman whose husband dies has right to inherit her husband’s property, without any interference.
“In every case, the woman has her right and her right includes the right to be herself, to be respected, to be given what she needs to actualize herself. Nobody should make anybody else inferior. The man has her strength and the woman has her strength and she should be allowed to use it. The strength of the man does not lie in battering or looking down on the woman, but in helping to grow the woman”.
The wife of the governor, Barr Mrs Chioma Uzodimma, represented by wife of the deputy governor, Mrs Bola Njoku promised to deploy the needed resources to ensure that elimination of gender-based violence does not remain a dream, but become a reality.
She called on all well meaning Imolites to commit to the fight, reminding people who have other people’s children under their care to treat them like human beings, the way they treat their own children, adding that the government led by her husband has taken women empowerment as a priority.
She noted that when women, both young and old are empowered to be self reliant, it will help in great measures to the quest to eradicate gender-based violence.
The speaker, Imo State House of Assembly, Rt Hon Paul Emeziem had earlier addressed the women before their take- off from the front of the assembly complex. He assured them that the assembly under his leadership will do all within its powers to ensure the passage and domestication of the Violence Against Persons (VAP) law in the state.
Leader of the delegation and Commissioner for Women Affairs and Vulnerable Group, Lady Nkechinyere Ugwu beckoned on the legislators to expedite action to pass and domesticate the the VAP law, which she said will effectively handle the issue of all forms of gender-based violence such as; rape and other sexual assaults.
She listed other forms of gender-based violence to include; wife, husband, children, wards battery, obnoxious widowhood practices, Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), forced early marriage, child molestation, among others.
At the government house, the commissioner described the governor as a gender friendly governor and called on him to throw his weight behind the domestication of the VAP law and implement other policies that will aid the elimination of all forms of gender-based violence.
The activism walk attracted various women groups and gender-based Non Governmental Organizations, including; Commissioners, female IMC chairmen, female legislators, wives of government appointees, wives of legislators, wives of IMC chairmen the Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), members of Noble Ladies for Hope, members of the Girl Guide, female civil servants, among others.