Igbo women call for total cleansing of South East
The South east Governors Forum (SEGF), Uche Ekwunife and governors of the region during their recent meeting
Published By: Ayorinde Oluokun
By Alex Enebeli
Women from the South East geopolitical zone have expressed worry over the deteriorating security in the zone and called for cleansing to boost socio-economic development of the zone.
The women made the call at the gathering of women in the zone called “Nkata Ndi Iyom Igbo” (meaning Igbo women Roundtable) in Enugu on Tuesday.
Th conference was organized by the Igbo women with the aim of partnering with the men and young people to ensure that the insecurity bedeviling the nation, and particularly the South East region is quelled.
In her remarks, Mrs Josephine Anenih, a onetime Minister of Women Affairs and convener of the gathering, noted that things were getting bad in Igboland.
According to her, what we see on daily basis in the region are tears, sorrows and blood, adding that women are the greatest victims of the insecurity wreaking havoc in the Igbo land.
Anenih recalled that the Igbo children whom they saw as the hope for the future were all running away from home and those who remained were roaming the streets due to unemployment.
She said that those in far away places who wanted to invest in their land were reluctant to come home because of insecurity.
“We have sadly looked on, but it is obvious we all need a team spirit for the wrongs to be righted.
“We must all look in the mirror to see what held us down and how we can partner for the progress of the third tripod in a Nigeria that seems to be at a crossroads, politically, economically and socio-culturally.
She said that the South-East needed to address the insecurity that had made the region lose billions of naira for a region known for its industry and commerce.
Similarly, the Chairperson of the group’s Board of Trustees, Mrs Regina Amadi-Njoku in her address, said the conversation was borne out of the fact there was a need for speedy healing of Igbo land.
Amadi-Njoku pointed out that no society developed without security, justice and peace.
According to her, women are the daughters, wives, and mothers that fuel the informal sector, yet they become the biggest victims of the dysfunctional formal sector where modern development seems to have excluded their input.
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She said that the conference would enable them to rub minds, proffer solutions in unison as they harnessed the ideas of men and women.
“Women play undeniable roles in peacekeeping, arbitration, and the institutionalization of justice in communities in ways that douse tension and promote peace.
“This is possible because, unlike men, women are tripodal in nature, they are daughters, wives, and mothers and they never totally leave any of those roles.
“So, they work for peace on all fronts and circumstances,” Amadi-Njoku said.
Declaring the meeting open, Gov. Peter Mbah of Enugu State, advocated the inclusion of women in social development, peace and nation-building in the country.
Mbah, represented by the Deputy Governor of the state, Ifeanyi Ossai, observed that women had been veritable tools for societal development, insisting that more partnerships with them on issues concerning the society could only engender success and progress.
Speaking on the theme of the event, “Women: Unifying Force in Peacebuilding” Mbah maintained that gone were the days when women were relegated to the backwaters of societal affairs, subjugated and maltreated by their male counterparts.
He said if prosperity would forgive the forefathers for engaging in such act out of ignorance, the present generation would not be forgiven should they resorted in such act.
“When we talk of the capacity and ability of women to build our community, local government, and the country, anyone who pretends that it is not true is only paying lip service to the reality that we all have to face.
“Most of the developments in the communities are the product of the women’s August meetings. The initiative they took is what gave birth to some of those projects we see in our communities.
“The Aba Women Resistance as we have just learned is still ongoing even in government. It is still the women who come to the office, asking of things that are not personal to them, the public schools, child vaccination, rural development and others, the governor said.
He explained that women were the same people who called the attention to the vital things that needed to get the society functioning.
“Women always have a way of dragging everyone back to their senses,” he added.
Some of the dignitaries who attended the event were the President General of Ohaneze Ndigbo, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, who was represented by the National Publicity Secretary, Alex Ogbonnia, former Minister of Power, Prof. Barth Nnaji; Amb. Bianca Ojukwu, Senator Grace Bent, among others. (NAN)