Chairman, Senate Committee on Women Affairs, Sen. Ireti Kingibe, on Thursday called for the recruitment of more women into the various security agencies to ensure gender inclusivity.
She made the call while speaking at a three-day “Strategic Sensitisation Workshop with Senior Officers of Defence and Security Agencies and Relevant Committees of National Assembly” in Abuja.
The training was jointly organised by the National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies (NILDS), UN Women and National Defence College.
The theme of the workshop was : Enhancing Gender-Responsive Security Operation and Community Dialogue Project (Phase II).
Kingibe (LP-FCT) said having more women in the various security agencies would promote diversity and gender responsiveness.
“There is the need to also encourage the recruitment of more women and prepare pathway for their professional development and leadership within the security forces.”
She also called for the inclusion of more women in all spheres of governance .
“We are the giant of Africa and we need to start thinking like the giant in every way. As long as we don’t legislate on issues concerning women, we won’t achieve more.” she said.
The lawmaker called for training programmes for security personnel to raise their awareness about gender dynamics,and equip them with the skills to handle diverse security issues in a gender responsive manner.
“Also ,there is need to train them on developing and utilising gender disaggregated data to understand the specific security needs of different demographics, specifically women.
“This approach will enable targeted intervention and will help in assessing effectiveness of security measures.”she said.
In his presentation, representative of UN Women, Mr Peter Mancha ,said that women were largely excluded from peace building processes.
“We have failed to utilise the potential that women have to contribute to conflict prevention and peace building.
“If we want to have sustainable peace, we must bring women to the table because of their potential.”he said.
He said that legislators were very critical actors in ensuring the security of women, calling for laws that are gender responsive.
“We need to have lawmakers who will have oversight functions to ensure that gender responsiveness is fully achieved.”he said.
Earlier, Director-General NILDS, Prof. Abubakar Sulaiman, said that no stone would be left unturned to ensure gender equality through legislation.
Sulaiman, represented by Prof. Shadrach Best, expressed the hope said that” a more robust security sector in Nigeria and a more gender friendly and gender inclusive security sector” would be achieved at the end of the project .(NAN)