By Benjamin Omoike
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Tuesday led other stakeholders to flag off the state’s leg of the HeForShe Campaign, a United Nations initiative which rallies the support of men to fight gender inequality in the world.
Speaking on the need for gender balancing at the event held at the Adeyemi Bero hall in Ikeja, Governor Sanwo-Olu said women are enriched with incredible potentials capable of promoting development in the society and must not be left untapped.
The Governor stated that the women are not a threat to the existence of men, noting that women have demonstrated great capacity in all areas of human endeavours that were hitherto exclusive preserve of men.
He said: “Today, we join other countries of the world to sign up to the ‘HeForShe’ campaign, a United Nations Women initiative aimed at enlisting the support of men in the fight for gender equality.
“This campaign is a clarion call on the male gender to sign up to this initiative because it is an idea that the society as a whole stand to benefit from.
“Women are endowed with incredible potentials that the society needs to harness to achieve optimum level of development. As the Chief Executive of Lagos State and one who believes in the critical role of women in advancing the socio-economic development of our State, I am proud to accept the responsibility to lead this campaign as an ambassador for the cause of Women in Lagos State.”
The Governor was decorated as the Chief Gender Champion of the State while other top citizens were also decorated as members of the movement.
Other Gender Champions that were decorated include the Deputy Governor, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat; Attorney General of the State, Moyosore Onigbanjo; Managing Director, Polaris Bank, Tokunbo Abiru; Oba of Elegushi land, Saheed Elegushi; representatives of the Christian and Moslem faith as well as a Youth representative among others.
According to the Governor, a world without women is unimaginable. He added that it is necessary they are accorded the right place in the scheme of things, while also reiterating the State’s effort to fight gender based discrimination and violence.
He urged other Gender Champions to further advocate for gender equality.
“Finally, as the Chief Gender Champion for the “HeforShe” campaign, I call on other champions and everyone to support our women, and accord them more space to operate. Let us continue to love and believe in them and the world will be a better place for all of us to achieve our full potentials.”
On his part, the Attorney General of Lagos State assured that in line with the T.H.E.M.E.S agenda of the Sanwo-Olu led administration, violence against women in the society will be handled in accordance with the law.
Representative of the UN Women Nigeria and ECOWAS, Ms Comfort Lamptey, who was represented by Lansana Wonneh, described the Governor as a principal fighter of segregation and violence against women, adding that his recognition is symbolic.
The Governor was joined by the First lady, Dr. Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu; Head of Service, Mr. Hakeem Muri-Okunola, Royal fathers and other dignitaries.