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Think equal, act equal!

Obiageli Ezekwesili's picture

This week’s release of the 2012 World Development Report (Gender Equality and Development) forced me to reflect, not on the life of my grandmother or women her age, but on the women of my generation and girls the age of my three young adult sons, whose voices and life stories the report brought to us so poignantly.

If they have to live through the inequality the report unveils, how can we who are blessed to work in development deliver better on our mission to lift slightly more than half of humanity out of the status of “second best”?

It was thrilling to see World Bank staff sporting t-shirts marked “Think Equal” around the Bank’s premises on Wednesday and I could not help thinking of what I believe the report is calling us to do. It invites us to do more than “Think Equal”. We have to “Act Equal”. In Gandhi’s words, “be the change we want to see”.

Happily, the WDR tells us what a better Africa we could achieve if we do indeed “Act Equal”. Maize yields would increase by 11 to 16 percent in Malawi and by 17 percent in Ghana if women farmers got the same access as male farmers to farm inputs, extension services and technical know-how. Burkina Faso’s agricultural production would rise six percentage points if farm inputs such as fertilizer were reallocated from men to women.

Imagine the difference this could have made in the man-made starvation we now witness in Somalia.

The “feel good” effect of knowing that the international community, through institutions like the World Bank, has moved significant resources into agriculture in Africa over the last few years does not prevent us from being haunted by how much more we could have achieved if we moved earlier, faster, delivered better, pushed ourselves more and kept the focus strictly on delivering results for the poor and the most vulnerable, among them women.

One of the report’s key messages—gender equality is also smart economics—has been around a while, but reiterated within the context of the grim figures the report delivers—excess female mortality after birth and “missing” girls at birth account for an estimated 3.9 million women each year in low- and middle-income countries—it constitutes an urgent call to action, especially for African policymakers and those of us who work on the world’s last development frontier.

Even the most macho policy- and decision-makers surely recognize the benefit countries, communities and companies would draw by reducing the productivity gap between male and female workers by one-third to one-half simply by eliminating barriers that prevent women from working in certain occupations or sectors. The gains accrued from increasing output per worker by three to 25 percent across a range of countries creates the kind of win-win that we must seek in order to deliver on the promise of development for Africa.

As a “knowledge bank”, we must do a better job not only of disbursing development finance but of leveraging our resources to support countries across the continent to implement the recommendations of the report. The sales pitch is a winner: countries that create better opportunities and conditions for women and girls can raise productivity, improve learning and nutritional outcomes for children, make institutions more representative and advance development prospects for all. Period! No mention of money. Policy entrepreneurship is what Africa is sorely in need of.

We owe it to the 51 percent of Africans who just happen to be women and girls to ensure that their children’s memory captures footage of women with a greater say in households and societies across the continent; women who earn equal pay for equal work and qualification; and women who lead truly better lives than my grandmother, my mother and I lived.

They deserve it. Our job warrants that we deliver for them. Our collective future depends on achieving and maintaining that gender equality.

Comments

Submitted by Anonymous on
Very well said, indeed. Thanks for being such an extraordinary advocate for Africa and the girls and women of Africa.

Submitted by musa aishat suleiman on
in as much as i agree with you on the need to focus on women for sustainable development, the point is not equality but equityand that men should be involved in every aspect of women studies.

The key to acting equal is first realizing that we are all equal. Then applying the golden rule to treat others as we would want to be treated. When do this to each other irrespective of gender or race, we will jointly be making a difference where we are. Personally, one of the challenges I see is that some women do not "think equal" and too easily resign themselves. In addition to expecting the world to come up with initiatives to help women, women need to make things happen for themselves. One of the low-hanging fruits for me, especially since I'm blessed among men, is ensuring that my sons have the same "home-training" as a girl would. All those who are blessed with male and female children and let the boys "out of the kitchen" are perpetuating the age-old "inequality." We have a chance to break that cycle and make sure our sons are as equipped as our daughters and vice versa. Our daughters must also have the same educational opportunities as our sons - a wise person once said "an educated woman is an educated family" and I'd add "an educated family leads to an educated nation." When we raise our children to live a gender equality life, we will have changed this suboptimal equlibrum. We will indeed be the change we want to see. Ladies, we have a key role in making this happen - for ourselves and for generations to come.

Submitted by Tony Nzekwe on
The Creator never made man and woman equal and,they can never be.NEVER!

Submitted by agava on
the level of gender dsparity is still alarming. women are stll considered subordinate to men. it is unfortunate that in the 21st century this is still a challenge. however women, should not slow down but fearlessly push on demanding for their rights. african countries havent done enough yet. more must be done in terms of educating the girl child and providing a free level playing field for women to have what is rightfully their. the foundation of all these should be in our families. think of your mother, sister, wife, girl friend and you as a man will have a positive attitude towards women's rights.

Submitted by OWIE FELIX on
It was said that civilization started from Africa but developmentally we are still learning the rope. It baffles me that our leaders have not been able to lead Africa through that path which will ignite that patriotism that is needed to fire our people to take the challenge of building the continent. The craze for material has blinded the leaders that they could not differentiate between national interest personal interest. Their glutenous nature is responsible for all these unwarranted conflicts bedeviling the continent. Because of these self inflicted conflicts, we devote most valuable time and resources to managing conflict rather than development. Attendant result today is poverty, health hazard and backwardness. We assumed to have gained Independence .I don't know whether politically or what because the so many conflicts in Africa today is so alarming that infrastructures that were inherited from colonial eras has depleted that we can not even to it. I think these phenomenons has been the bane of Africa

Submitted by Anonymous on
my view of what gender equality means is making my mother in law understand that in this day n age it is OK for me to go to work and my husband a Luhya(tribe in Kenya) where men are highly considered, can stay home change the diapers as i bring the bread....despite her and many others in my matrimonial village being staunch Christians, still believe in a woman's place is in the kitchen and below her man, the rural areas are the concentration point of trying to bring about the idea that a woman can be a wife a mother and a career woman...and at the same time let the urban woman know that gender equality does not mean disrespecting and talking down men because we can do twice what they can do.......

Submitted by Anthony Akinwale on
Oby Ezekwesili and the World Bank advocate gender equality because it is "smart economics". I full identify with gender equality but for a different reason. Women should be treated equally, not just because that will raise economic production, but simply because women are human beings. What makes a man a human being is the same as what makes a woman a human being. In other words, the dignity of a woman as a human being is not in any way less than the dignity of a man as a human being. To advocate gender equality because of its potential for higher economic production comes very close to reducing the woman to a thing. What is advocated--gender equality--is thus undermined by that on which it is predicated--greater economic production. The common dignity that belongs to us as human beings--male and female-- must, at all times, be acknowledged, promoted and defended.

Submitted by Alex Afurobi on
I quite agree with u that women should be treated with more respect.Intelligence has no gender or colour.Women complement men.That is, women make men complete because He(God) made them male and female.When they are suppressed, we suppress their contributions,talents, ingenuity and we suppress the wonderful balance,soothing effect,array of beauty,and the doggedness feminity can bring in a male dominated but crisis ridden world.Good article, Dr Oby!

Submitted by Anonymous on
The debate on gender equality have been on for quite a few decades and it behooves on us as 'civilized' people to take an introspective look at the variables that would bring out the best on this debate. Almost every culture in history, until recently in developed countries, have a sort of second class rating against womenfolks even though there are no clearly laid down law or statute anywhere that relegate them to such impasse. It occurs, clearly as natural as we have allowed. my aruement thus is that most men and world leaders in all nations are trained and nurtured by women mostly. Chaka Zulu, as ferocious and wicked as he was, was known to have adored only one person above himself; his mother. Why then can't the African women use this tremendous influence to change their lot over centuries? I believe women must be given the chance to participate more in economic and socio-political development in global terms but then, they have to use their influence more strategically and smarter than they are doing. Men wouldnt relinquish this power if women fail to be the change they want to see. thank you

Submitted by Rev. Emmanuel Aule on
My dear sister I appreciate your courage, hard work without which you would have not risen to the position you are today, especially in our world of great selfishness and injustice. Also I appreciate your advocacy on gender equality that gave birth to Think equal, Act equal. however I believe that there is a greater task ahead of us. my,dear concern is the fact that most of these policies does not get to the people that need them. How does the policy contribute to the life of a woman who could not train her children, due to ignorance. The children who could not school because the father had two or more wives and never cares about himself talk more of the children. Let us think of the ways of getting these policies to the less opportune who are living in the hinter lands, Thank you.

Submitted by Taweni Gondwe Xaba on
The following words resonate deeply with me. "The sales pitch is a winner: countries that create better opportunities and conditions for women and girls can raise productivity, improve learning and nutritional outcomes for children, make institutions more representative and advance development prospects for all. Period! No mention of money. Policy entrepreneurship is what Africa is sorely in need of." In Malawi, there is, of course, the added burden of Aids and malaria which not only take the patients out of productive agricultural circulation but also the women connected to them since they become primary care-givers even in hospitals (due to untenable nurse-to-patient ratios). This is simply adding to the threat of food insecurity at household level. Food insecurity >disease/crime >low productivity/low participation in civic activity> compromised democracy >failure to reach MDGs. Certainly, government policy that prioritises better planning and training in the public healthcare sector as well as more people-centric and productivity-focused public spending is much needed. Not so much sourcing more funding but, rather, being fiscally disciplined with what is already in hand. This means no unbudgetted-for private jet for the head of state when the national carrier is haemmorhaging to the point of near-death, and no government resources being spent on ferrying and feeding women to dance at political events but rather on empowering the very same women with training and skills that can provide a better foundation for themselves, their families and the country as a whole. Please keep preaching this gospel. Failing to empower the woman is tantamount to destroying her entire family and future.

Submitted by jeff on
Genda equality is very good. This is because, biblically both man and woman were created in God's image. To me I believe "What a man can do, a woman can do it as well"

Submitted by Daniel berhanu on
Gender equality in africa is not advanced as we see in European.in etiopia some improvement is seen after fall of Derge rigme.in my opoinon male must take vital role for imporevement of gender equaliy.first it must change attitude by saying that NOTHING DOWN WOMEN.

Submitted by Mrs. O on
Dr. Oby, 51% women and girls of Africa need to start thinking and acting equal before the world will take us serious. It is great that the World bank is jump starting this and can do more for us women folk by organizing motivational programs in this line along side the benefits of a better world of "raising productivity, improving learning and nutritional outcomes for children, making institutions more representative and advance development prospects for all" as you mentioned. If women dont think and Act equal no one will do it for us. I'm an African woman thinking and acting equal everywhere i go. I make a demand of that equal treatment by putting in more effort than any man my age will.

Submitted by Balkis Begum on
Africa is getting poorer by the day, although not in terms of units this world bank employee refers to. The ecological unity in Africa is the EXTENDED FAMILY where warmth, security, value, respect and insight into life's meaning can be successfully gleaned. It uses very little energy, wastes none, and produces great reward. PARITY IS AN EVIL INVENTION. Although all things come in pairs, if UNITY is forgotten, then Mankind will perish, as it surely is embarking on it. Respecting the planet, - it could not be better served than by honoring TRADITION and hierarchy: There - like in a Russian doll - one goes into the other. Baby-Child-Mother-Father-Grandparents. Without submission and obedience nothing is served and nothing gets achieved. World Bank fat cats and their kittens are just spoiled, each in his room, with each his telly in front of him, what quality of life in Washington??? Come on, when were you honest the last time? Politics by definition is not.

Submitted by Wellington on
The precise issue of gender equality as it affects women (especially the poor rural woman) cannot be overemphasized. Inadequate policy analysis and development project outcomes assessment had hampered the realization of the 'dreams of our fatherland'. As rightly opined, the international donor organizations like the World Bank, must do more than just disbursing development finance but of also putting into place the necessary strategies and mechanism to see that recommendations and policy outcomes are adequately followed. The poor rural woman must be given a fair hearing to decisions that affect her and the generality of the populace. The political climate with which to drive this policy 'vehicle' must also be well looked at by the international donor agencies and policy-makers.

Submitted by Abu on
My problem with this "Gender inequality" is that I am not so coversant with any constitutional law that holds the woman down in my countr Nigeria that says men should take first before the women. I just think that the women always want to draw sympathy from the men which is keeping them down.The traditions which operate in our then primitive societies have given way to modernity in all our affairs. The only thing is just that the women also have to discard that complex and they should be encouraged to do so.If you can be there,why can't others be there?

Submitted by rauf seidu on
It is a known fact that women constitute the majority numbers in Africa and yet among the most vulnerable people in society. Over the years, traditional African cultures which was pre-dominated by men sought to discriminate greatly between the sexes and women relegated to the background. apart from the biological differences between the sexes which infact are unique and play specific roles in one's life. I think more and more people are realizing that the perceive notion that women have low IQ and are incapable of achieving great things is beginning to change, but the education must continue unabated until it reach a level where we can know longer have these discrimination against them. In traditional African societies, one of the measures that could rapidly generate good retends on this campaign is economic power for women. empower women economically in the households and the benefit would spread to other people. So lets think equal and act equal.

Submitted by arukwe, faustin on
The incontrovertible truth about equality is that nothing is absolutely equal to the other! Nevertheless, potentials and certain features may seem to be identical with another only on a relative ground that does not necessarily make them the same or in this case, equal.

Submitted by SAMWEL GODFREY GUNI on
the gender equlity is give women power to do big insteady of let them down by make to be mother house, to what i believe women they can do better if the support of government take place efficiently by support them in agriculture,industry production, in financial and marketing even in support the development of country in economic and politics

Submitted by Anonymous on
First of all am so proud as awomen by miss Obiageli Ezekwesili's blog as world bank head for Africa she is such good example that African women can do mirecale for development and making the world better place if the are given the chance.cultural barrier lack of awerness and litracy is the major challenges that rolled us back Africa.we have every thing specialy women 51% good hearted strong like adimond women if all of them got achance to explore their potential thats when Africa will have selfe reliance and make poverity history!!!!

Submitted by Roberts Oladipo on
In as much as I read and enjoyed your article,I must say that it does not reflect our socio-political and religious realities. Africa,as a continent,is deep rooted culturally,as such it is socially impossible'if not difficult,to think and act equal in a male-dominated environment. Even before a child is born,preference is given to a male child,for culturally obvious reasons.Buchi Emecheta's novel,JOYS OF MOTHERHOOD,clearly depicts this cultural realities,which to me is an acknowledgement. No doubt women are beginning to take the stage in political affairs of the world,the question is how many of those women has Africa produced?Yes,we have Saleef Johnson of Liberia,who is becoming rather too politically ambitious,and a few others like you,who truly believe in gender equality. Madam,truth must be told,Africa hasn,t got to the level of political tolerance devoid of gender prejudice we see in civilised societies.Therefore,so long as we are still deep rooted culturally,it would be politically,socially and religiously difficult,if not impossible,to think and act equal!

Submitted by Ssempijja Edwar... on
The situation is still pathetic here in South sudan where young girls are traded by parents in exchange for cows,how can human beings be exchanged for just cows.some thing has to be done to restore human didgnity comrades.

Submitted by Anonymous on
The Queen Mother always had and exercised her power. The Women's Societies in Africa (many cultures) also exercised their power. What seems to be happening now is the reculturalization of Africa to Western Principles and Mores without retaining the good elements of our ancestry. Be careful that when you sit down to eat with a vampire you do not come up a vampire yourself. History is not for fools but for the wise. Covering ones eyes does not make reality disappear. We have been the stewards of this planet for centuries and though we have had to endure diabolical enslavement, colonialism and other isms, we now dance with the "devil" (so to speak) in this generation as the plan to control all the resources on the earth evolves through OUR cooperation with the elements that promote such a vision. Look at what has happened to all the indigenous people and their land on this earth. Credit is NOT a good thing, especially when it involves usury. Africa is fast spinning into a new age colony of the western mentality and corporate structure. It seems that the New World Order as described by George Bush when he was the President is a plan that is alive and well and being delivered on the backs of Black people once again. Change is good, but let it be the change YOU thought of. Destroying your past and your culture does not Change who and what you are. May the Creator have mercy on our souls and the ancestors rise up to give us correct guidance and strength. Abortions and AIDS not withstanding.

Submitted by Eric Nsubuga on
Gender in Africa is now changing to artificial due to political views but the nature of gender is relative .ie. Depending where you are. Eg.the country, culture,Education ,Wealth, Language also maters. So i suggest that Gender must be given time to mature . I support the age of thinking of equality in gender but equality is when one is first and the other second.One must be the fist step to the second. Biblical view on this focuses on development that is why one of the sex is known as helper .

Submitted by seema sheth on
hello i liked this page and i think here in Tanzania i think there is no gender differnce i have started following this its good tosee this happening seema

Submitted by olurin adebayo on
after reading the article i understand what women can do ...count me out of the fathers that share in believe that male child is better than female i will give equal opportunity. many thanks aolurin

Submitted by Anonymous on
It's important that we all should be relevant but not wasting precious time fighting for equality that may never be achieved. Don't you know that men queue up patiently for women in relevant positions? Frankly speaking, let our women tolerate themselves first foremost. If you cast your mind back to the last PDP presidential primary election in Abuja, how many female delegates were present? Many! But how many voted for Sarrah Jubril-the only female contestant? Non! She only voted herself. So what are we saying? Finally, lets not forget to ask ourselves the reason why the country can not afford to let go of Okonjo in the area of finance admin/planning. She is 100% relevant and needed in that sphere, we have many of them-women doing greatly in other areas.

Submitted by Nwagwuocha Eze on
Right from my childhood days, i have come to hear and know this issue very well. i thank you madam for finding time to write on it as it affect growth and development in Africa. i am of the view the that women are getting equal opportunity in the scheme of things especially in Nigeria. some cultural practices that inhibit women are really giving way. The girl-child today in Nigeria have come to see or hear of great women in politics,Academic,journalism,sport in fact in all works of life like Queen Amina(of blessed memory), Mrs Theresa Chukwuma(first female graduate in Mbaise(had her masters in 1958) and first black principal Queens college Enugu and Lagos),Chief mrs margret Ekpo(of blessed memory) to mention but a few. They have come to know that it is about them aspiring/working hard to achieve their ambition like their male counterpart. so the job there i guess,is to encourage the women to venture into any profession they so desire.Today, you are world bank's vice president not because you are a woman but because you are qualify/competent.Therefore women should not drawback and wait for any special consideration.

Submitted by Chimdindu Eben ... on
Thinking and Acting Equal Is God's Plan. After all, men and women are but sperm and ova fused together to create humans that are polarised into sexes-males and females by God Almighty. It is God's arrangement that no male or females is ever reproduced without the other ''thinking and acting'' equally to enable conception. It is God's plan that regeneration of mankind on earth cease the moment that either males or females genders cease to exist. Therefore thinking and acting equal is God's plan...earthly opposed by men...to their own misery since science has proven that the longevity of fathers and children depend significantly on the longevity of wives and mothers, and that the reverse does not hold. The culture of thinking and acting unequal is deliberate opposition to God's plan that manifests as "acquired humanness pollution syndrome" that mediates chronic underdevelopment. I have produced a regression equation that this is the case and would like to receive offer to review the study by development experst who know that in all affairs of life...they do 'think', 'act' and ''advocate' equality. My thesis shows how systemic capacity inequality interacts with corruption to mediate 'Sustainable Human Development'. Thank you for the audience.

Submitted by Anonymous on
Like all comments about gender in Africa, this ignores the significant proportion of women who live in matriarchial societies where weomen have enormous power.

Submitted by Tony okonigene on
Oby is one lady I have always admired, but her piece on gender equality is a challenge to the arrangement of God. From the beginning God made it so, the woman can never be equated to man.

Submitted by Prince Chudi Ch... on
is this what she went to the World Bank to do? Gender Equality or Mobilizing low interest credit to reach business units in Africa to enable job creation. Madam due process pls reorganize your priorities.

Submitted by MARCUS T. CHAVURA on
WE HAVE A LONG WAY TO GO BUT WE CAN MAKE IT,THAT IS TO HAVE A SOCIETY THAT RESPECTS OUR WOMEN AND TAKES THEM AS INTELLIGENT,WISE AND DYNAMIC WOMEN,THE PROBLEM IS OUR BACKGROUND,THE AFRICAN CULTURES,MOSTLY,WHICH HAVE BRAINWASHED US,ARE NATURALLY,UNFORTUNATELY VERY OPPRESSIVE.WE HAVE TO BEGGIN FROM THERE,OUR BRAIN,OUR MENTALLITY,OUR INSTICT.LONG LIVE GENDER EQUALLITY ACTIVISTS LONG LIVE OUR MOTHERS AND SISTERS.

Dee Oby, am i of thesame opinion with you, i am only privillaged to be a man but in my findings i discorvered women are better managers appology to my fellow men. Ever since i discorvered this i have taken advantagea of it as a married man. Women takes good care of their parent more while men looks after their families. Time may fail me if i'm to talk about all the wonderful conributions women are contributing in the development of the world, i also need to say here; there shuld be proper check on the power when given to them cos it usually gets to there head. Note: we still need people like you in Nigeria to but things on its light part. I have always use you as a point of refrence as to what an ideal woman should be and a roll model to my three wonderful girls. Keep it up and God bless you.

Submitted by Ozioma Onyenwea... on
Women over the years have grown with the idea of inequality as being part of life, and natural. Women need a re-orientation, a continous one, to break free from the past. The fight must start with the women themselves. In all the African societies, it is the women themselves that enforce those unequal and discriminatory rules. They are the ones for instance that wolud ensure that a widow must lie on bare floor, must have her hair shoven. drink or bath with the water used in washing the widow's late husband's body. While at the same time they would serve and attend to a widower and ensure that he is well cared for before, during, and after the burial of the widower's wife. They would even provide one of their own to sleep with the widower at night 'to prevent the late wife's spirit from disturbing his peaceful sleep.' They are the ones that challenge and question the mitive of a woman venturing into areas deemed exclusive for men. Who is whose enemy? Women are a force to reckon with. Women can capture a city without lifting an arm if they determine to. Factors militating against women in African Society notwithstanding, African women can always achieve whatever they set their minds on. Equality is achievable, though not a platter of gold, if the women themselves are determined. Women worldwide are agents of change. Taking up the challenge is infact the challenge. There is hope. I like what is happening in Saudi now. More goodnews will filter in.

Submitted by James K Alabi on
Thanks our own vice-president of the world bank. In the past few months, i have been thinking deeply on this issue and i get worried by the way governments in different parts of the world perceive the women folk. You get more worried, when you learn that women, who at school showed better thinking ability than most men, end up unutilised, unappreciated and unproductive. It is salient to mention that the whole perception started a long time ago, and this wrong placement has led us to where we are today, a state of gruesome killing, bomb explosion, big time thievery, absence of values, presence of half baked illeterates in governance, financial system instabiity, etc, etc. The list is endless!!. I want to state that we need to go back to the drawing board, and allow our women to occupy the pride of place in all facets of our economic, political and social settings. In actual fact, relegating them to the background is detrimental to our nation, Nigeria in particular and the world in general. How do we achieve this.? Women must come out more boldly to have full representation in the scheme of things. Women must be more vocal than before and set up performance standard to measure the rate at which they are getting the deserved recognition. Womenfolk must present a common front and get the support of the menfolk who has strong belief in them. Come to think of it, women are higher in number, in terms of population, but ignored in productive and decision making activities . This is an abnormality and should be corrected immediately. Finally, experience has shown that women are more organised, more proactive, nore resilient, more accomodating, and peaceful. To ignore their contributions to our GDP is to remain at the level we are now. Men should support the quest of women for greater acceptance and recognition to participate in bringing about a more focused, balanced and articulate governance. Thanks so much.

Submitted by onuh stanley on
God never created men equal among men, talk more of women to men. all fingers are not equal and can never be in this world. gender equality only brings about unhealthy competition between couples or male and female. Oby should stop deceiving herself. let things be the way God created and made it to be. some women are better than some men, in term of education, economic, political and all that, even Oby can never want to be equal with some village women. so what are we talking about, what's all these noise about women everywhere? now, there's no wealth man that will not send his children to school, both male and female, there's no rich man that will ask his children to go and hock on the street. instead of talking about child labour, we should be talking about helping poor families of the world, that send their children to sell on the street because of the hash economic condition. let talk about better economy, good governance, that will bring prosperity to everyone. ask Oby how many female kids in her village she has help to train in school? she enjoy herself at the world bank and talk about equality at the top, What has she done at the grassroots? ask her now to relinquish her position for another woman, only then u will know if there's equality among women

Submitted by Muzigirwa Bonav... on
I don't think we can do without seriously involving everyone and all in the awareness raising about this notion. With my training in African culture and my three years experience working for gender related projects, I've come to understand that people have opinions culturally based that dehumanise women, but unfortunately some time favoured by ignorant women themselves. During my sensitization session in a hospital, I was shocked to hear more than three betting me that we shall never succeed to make them believe in gender equality. I believe broaden minded men and women should not give in our struggle, but the task will be so difficult as long as among women, whose rights are fought for, there are some who hinder the success of this fight.

Submitted by Anonymous on
I LOVE THE IDEA OF GENDER EQUALITY,COS GONE ARE THE DAYS WHEN WOMEN WERE LEFT AT THE BACK YARD,NOT CONTRIBUTING TO THE GROWTH OF THEIR NATION, WERE NOT ALLOW TO BE ECONOMIC INDEPENDENCE ETC, AS MOTHER'S WHO KNOWS THE NEEDS OF THEIR CHILDREN, SHOULD BE IN THE BETTER POSITION TO KNOW THE NEEDS OF THEIR CHILDREN.

Submitted by Tony Achi on
Equality have been man's biggest challenge, from the stone age to our contemporary jet age the story and situation is similar. In Nigeria where i live, i have seen so much injustice and crime committed against women and children all in the name of babaric culture, corruption in high and low places preventing would-be leaders from achieving their potentials. I use to be a victim of this, but i God for mentors like you 'Obiageli Ezekwesili'. Just listening to you speak at the 8 CVL Annual Lecture on the theme: Education, Youth and Elections on Monday, 7th February 2011 at the Nigeria Institute of International Affairs, Lagos, Nigeria have changed my life, in the light of Gandhi’s words, “be the change we want to see” am living the change now, though people keep telling me that i have marked my life for poverty, i don't mind. We have to call injustice, corruption by its rightful name so that we can run away from it. This have also motivated me to do further research into inequality, to see how we can improve equality in educational opportunity in Nigeria. Am at present working on a Ph.D thesis titled "Equality of Educational Opportunity in Nigeria: A Critical Appraisal" at the Department of Educational Foundations, University of Nigeria, Nsukka. I God for using you to inspire to make a positive contribution to my generation. Tony Achi

Submitted by Mazi Ibekwe C. ... on
I sincerely believe that women has the latent power with which to contribute immensely to their greatness in all ramifications. However, for the fact that the potency of this latent power has not been utilized, except for the few liberated ones, women in Africa still remain the wretched of the earth, courtesy Franz Fanon. Implicitly, proper utlization of this power seen as the power of innate conviction would orchestrate the liberation process of women. Mothers now is your time, take it for history beckons.

Submitted by KABRE Madi on
gender equality isn't the way of developpement . The gender equality cannot guarantee us the efficiency and the performance in our institutions. We have to promote on the other hand the equality of become moldy to base the quality. I agree that girl must have same right to go to school, to choose their president, to be candidate .....

After the meeting of the young African leaders had with the president Obama in Washington DC.We formed Nigeria Just Government which pray for the health of the business of Aso Rock. The health of the glory of the church of Nigeria. The Health of the glory of the Church of the President Jonathan Goodluck and the health of the glory of the church of the day. The prosperity of the gender equality is also directly proportional to the health of the glory of the church of Nigeria Just Government. There are many mails, letters, messages,counsels, advises that has been sent in through mediums to the govt and yet to be responded to.The success of the prosperity World Development Report@Africa, even the gender equality is directly proportional to the prosperity of the response gotten on this comment.Honorable Vice President, you are once our education minister, can you pls encourage the govt of the world bank on this on our behalf. The God that answer the prayer of the prosperity of Nigeria Just Government will bless you. Amen.,

Well said Ma'am.A lot of African leaders profess their concerns and care about the grassroot,and they employ as a competitive advantage- their agenda of women's inclusion into politics.These are mere political strategies for seeking more votes.Enough of their rhetorics and cliches.I believe it's time the Middle East air of change sweep across African countries in the context of gender equality. First, the value bar societies place on women must be raised;from the perimeter of every home, our value system needs a revamp.Husbands should not go unpunished for beating up their wives.Slight surprise rape rate and female student victimization(by lecturers) in our colleges and universities is disheartening.This inter-generational value system transfer needless to say,must be checked. A female coursemate taught me a Mathematic course while preparing for my final exams back then in school.Suffice to say she'd be indispensable anywhere she works.Government should legislate laws and institutionalize regulatory body to evaluate and monitor workforce gender distribution in corporate bodies.An appreciable quota must be reserved for women in order to brace up the productivity gap like you said. Thank goodness African countries are beginning to include women in politics.They need Strategic Marketing so as to inspire an average girl-child.Imagine Saudi Arabia disenfranchising women of the right to vote.It's a thing of joy Middle East is experiencing a positive perspective or so to say, dimension to what anarchy had been known to be.This anarchy has created a new social order to Africa and Middle East. Kudos to the UN MDGs, and World Bank for their thought and action leaderships.

Submitted by MARK TONY on
The potency of the subject statement need not be over emphasized,conscious and deliberate emphasis should be on it's implementation if real development is to be achieved in Africa,this has been aptly demonstrated in Nigeria under OBJ's regime, when the country's accumulated debts was cleared to liberate it from international debt trap peonage,recall,the negotiating team was led by a woman (Mrs.Ngozi Oknjo Iweala). The current vice President of the world bank (Mrs.Oby Ezekwesili) on her part pioneered the concept of functional due diligence and then newly created ministry of solid minerals amongst others,gender is therefore not,and cannot be a barrier to thinking and acting equally for any developmental oriented race.

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