Photo: FemiDevs in Kisumu UNDP Kenya
A human rights organization, Global Right Nigeria, has described women participation in the digital sphere as gender equality and a pre-requisite for sustainable economic development.
The Programme Manager of the Organisation, Edosa Oviawe, alongside other experts in the digital Technology sector, agreed that most women in Nigeria lack access to digital technology, a persistent gender-based digital divide which has left some of them unable to reap the benefits of digitalization.
At a fire chat forum tagged “Breaking Barriers, Building Bridges: Celebrating Women in Tech”, organised by Global Rights Nigeria in Abuja, Mr Oviawe said the programme was meant to bring women who have braved the odds on ICT to mentor younger ones on how to overcome challenges associated with accessing the technology world.
“There is need for us to continue to have conversations around these issues and to showcase women who have actually broken some of those barriers and ventured into some of those areas people used to see as difficult for women,” he said.
Founder of Womenovate, Motunrayo Opayinka affirmed that the 2023 International Women’s Day celebration with theme “Digital” was a call to embrace technology with inclusion for women.
Mrs Opayinka said globally, economic loss from lack of participation by women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) was worth $42 trillion.
According to United Nations Women’s 2022 Gender Snapshot, women’s exclusion from the digital world has caused a loss of $1 trillion for the economies of developing countries in the last decade, a loss that will increase by 50% by 2025 if nothing is done in this regard.
All over the world, women’s and girls’ movements are defiant and steadfast in the face of regressive gender norms and pushback against their rights.
The significant investment in developing women’s skills in complex technology activities and programs, as well as involving more women in tech governance and decision-making.
Activists are clamoring for inclusion of women in ICT, calling for an end to Violence, discrimination in education, the workplace and in legislation.
Reporting by Julian Osamoto; Editing by Adeniyi Bakare & Tony Okerafor