The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Friday in Abuja, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the National Council of Women Societies (NCWS) on the protection of the rights of women, youths and children.
The Executive Secretary of the Commission, Prof. Bem Angwe, said that the MoU was part of efforts to end discrimination against women by ensuring that they were educated and empowered to claim their rights.
According to Angwe, women, who today constitute majority of Nigeria’s population, still remain the most vulnerable, poorest and the weakest members of the society.
The executive secretary said that implementation of the document would enable women to enjoy equal opportunities with the men, in order to attain their full potential.
Angwe expressed concern that women in Nigeria experienced certain disadvantages because of their gender, in spite of the fact that the constitution prohibits discrimination.
“By signing this, the Nigerian woman, represented by the NCWS, is stating clearly that she undertakes to assist the commission to realise its statutory responsibility and mandate of promoting and protecting human rights in the country.
“That they are committed to ensuring that the requisite framework to which the parties can collaborate, enlighten and train the public on human rights, is appropriately put in place, particularly as it relates to the rural areas in major concerns of health, education, family and societal values.
“That the Nigerian women are committed to supporting the work of the commission to put an end to all forms of domestic violence, sexual exploitation and abuse of the Nigerian woman, henceforth.”
On her part, the National President of NCWS, Mrs Nkechi Mba, said that the association was the most viable organ to use in passing information to women across the country.
Mba said this was so because it had representation in all the 774 local governments of the country.
She said in spite of several efforts being made, a lot of women were still ignorant of their rights.
The NCWS president noted that the signing of the MoU was one way of ensuring intense and effective sensitisation, to make every Nigerian woman aware of her rights.
She said that with the needed awareness, women would ensure the protection and respect of their rights.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the NCWS, the umbrella body of all women societies, is responsible for the advancement of the cause of women in Nigeria.(NAN)