pledges gender balance
By John Alechenu, Abuja
The Presidential Candidate of the Labour Party, Mr. Peter Obi has promised to be a President for all Nigerians irrespective of gender, class, or creed.
He said if elected President come 2023, his Presidency will rebuild Nigeria where the rich and the poor are equitably and fairly represented.
Obi according to a statement from the Obi/ Datti Media Office, said this in Lagos, at the weekend while addressing the Queen’s College Lagos old girls Association during an event marking the 95th anniversary of the school.
Obi promised to play his part to help build a nation where Citizens’ interests will supersede political interests and the existing trust gap between the government and the governed will be reduced to the barest minimum.
He equally said the female gender will enjoy a pride of place in his cabinet and all appointive positions.
The LP candidate recalled that as governor of Anambra State, his administration achieved close to a 60-40 gender balance in appointive and elective positions while that of federal government hovered around 30 to 35%.
He assured women that his Presidency if elected “intends to progressively aim for between 35-40%, with aggressive gender mainstreaming action plan and rigid benchmarks”
Obi announced that education is at the core of his government’s policy thrust noting that he will pursue a Marshal plan-type programme on education that incorporates compulsory technical and vocational skills, sports, entrepreneurship, programming, and digital skills from the primary to the secondary level.
“And ‘Inevitably, we will improve access to finance, MSMEs, youths and women, to significantly reduce unemployment and insecurity.” He added.
The former Anambra state Governor said, “We will introduce a mandatory ‘No Child left Behind’ educational policy, mindful that Nigeria’s inadequate investment in the social sectors – health, education, and housing has resulted in the current dismal social and demographic trends reflected in low life expectancy, high maternal mortality rate, large number of out-of- school children, huge unmet housing needs as well high youth unemployment.“
He further said, “Our government shall prioritize education to serve the following functions: technical and industry relevance; alignment with local comparative advantages and factor endowments; modern skills proficiency, critical thinking, ethical citizenship values, global competitiveness, and talent export.“
According to him, his administration will also “prioritize a structured approach to developing the digital skills of our young population to give them the competitive advantage to receive offshore jobs in the new gig economy, while also improving the efficiency and productivity level of our economy.”
Speaking further, he said, “The Obi-Datti administration, when elected, will sustain national development. Our governance principles, priority projects and programmes shall be anchored on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Obi noted that experience shows that inclusiveness is an essential element in effective public policy making pointing out that he intends to stop the under representation of critical components of the society in decision making such as women, youth, and the vulnerable in our midsts.
The Candidate equally told the Queen College Old Girls that if elected President he will “From its inception, encourage investment in infrastructure, energy, transport, irrigation, and telecoms and education with gender mainstreaming and social inclusion in education, enterprise and politics will always be a priority.
He also expressed his Commitment to the well being of the Girl Child and Women pointing out that this will be fully reflected in his broad and gender-specific policies.
Obi also announced plans to reset and reboot Nigeria in all ramifications –leadership and governance, security of life and properties, economic and political freedom and this according to the candidate “will entail the promotion of intangible assets that underpin democracy; namely, good governance, rule of law, security of lives and properties and robust institutions.
“There will be visible and measurable indices of governance the people can experience.“ he added.