Dame Tallen to empower 150 widows in commemoration with 2022 IWD

The Honourable Minister of Women Affairs, Dame Pauline Tallen, KSG, OFR has disclosed plans of her Ministry to empower 150 widows while she was briefing the press to herald the 2022 International Widows' Day commemoration. The International Widows' Day, 2022 is scheduled to come up on Thursday, 23rd June, 2022 as prescribed by the United Nations.

Dame Tallen was represented at the press briefing by the Acting Permanent Secretary/Director, Economic Services of Federal Ministry of Women Affairs, Mr. Idris Muhammed.

The Press Briefing was held on Tuesday, 21st June 2022 at the Ministry’s  Headquarters in Abuja. 

International Widows’ Day is usually commemorated every 23rd of June with this year's theme being “Invisible Women, Invisible Problem."

Dame Pauline Tallen stated that International Widows’ Day was launched in 2010 globally to raise awareness on the violation of human rights that widows suffer worldwide, noting that due to the death of their spouses/husbands, June 23rd has been set aside in observance of the International Widows’ Day since 2011.

The Honourable Minister disclosed that the day has been set aside to draw the attention of the unheard voices of widows and to highlight the plights of widows and that of their children, following the deaths of their husbands.

Dame Tallen further stated that the day provides an opportunity to work towards the welfare of widows around the world, and it calls for action towards the recognition of widows as well as helping them in achieving their full rights, noting that in our society today, widows are denied their inheritance, land rights; they suffered eviction from their homes, ostracized, stigmatized, abused and discriminated against and sometimes, their children are withdrawn from schools and more vulnerable to abuse especially in the case of girls.

The Minister stated that Federal Ministry of Women Affairs with its mandate, and in collaboration with stakeholders/partners has made appreciable efforts towards addressing the plights of widows through some of the following interventions:

• High level advocacy to State Governors, Legislatures/The Senate, Traditional rulers, Religious leaders and other gate keepers.

• Advocacy visits to World Bank, CBN, Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning for increased economic support for the women.

•  Development and continuous review of Gender policy documents to improve the lives of women in Nigeria.

• Engagement of media on the plights of women and children especially on gender equality agenda and frameworks.

• Capacity building and empowerment programme for women including widows and disabilities for their wellbeing and skills acquisition.

• Sensitization and awareness creation on effects of climate change on health and environment.

She further called on stakeholder and partners to collectively address the issue of reduction of poverty among women and girls with renewed commitment and determination.

Earlier on, Dr (Mrs) Josephine Ogazi-Egwuonwu, the Executive Director, Widows and Orphans Empowerment Organization (WEWE) thanked the Honourable Minister for the efforts of the Ministry at taking care of widows; she urged for more collaborations with the Ministry concerning widows.

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