Prime Unique Women Initiative (PUWI) is a nongovernmental organisation that aims to improve women on all sides; support women and children in crisis; provide post crises relief and rehabilitation of victims of insecurity, especially women and children. All about women in need. They give succour and palliatives to women and children in pains, victims of insecurity, especially women. JOY YESUFU in this report takes a look at their recent move to help Nigerian entrepreneurs compete favourably with their counterparts and improve export capacity for the nation.
Nigerian women have been known to great business women and entrepreneurs. Most of them have excelled in their private endeavours to become CEOs of their businesses and have grown conglomerates.
Some women who are into tailoring over time have built up brands and have their clothe lines through their personal initiatives. Others have learnt how to make shoes, bags, upholstery. Soap, detergent and some other basic house needs made from the comfort of their homes that can compete favorably with the ones produced by big companies.
Women form a fulcrum in economic development not just in Nigeria but Africa at large. One of the major challenge Nigerian women have is how to sell their brands across nations or to other far away geo- political zones to attract more patronage and improve their businesses.
After producing such quality goods, they are most times sold within the local communities to neighbors and friends which rarely bring economic value to the nation at large despite the fact that such products can compete favorably anywhere in the world.
It is in this light that the Prime Unique Women Initiative (PUWI), which has over time empowered women entrepreneurs through their medium of cooperatives and created platforms for the economic empowerment for women and youths, have put together a Strategic Women Development for Sustainable National Growth and Security seminar in Dubai later in November.
Addressing journalists in Abuja on the aim of the strategic women seminar scheduled to hold in Dubai, Convener of PUWI, Dr Folake Yobah, said one of the main purposes of the conference is to galvanise international funding for women entrepreneurs and create market access where Nigerian business women can have opportunity to showcase what they can do.
She said they also want to warn our women entrepreneurs to know what it takes to do business internationally.
“We want to give first hand knowledge since most Nigerian women don’t know how to manage their businesses in terms of branding and in terms of using technology. So, the event will create an opportunity for women to understand policies, etiquettes and technicality of doing international business.
“It will be highlighted with networking sessions where business communities will meet with our entrepreneurs, which will give tremendous opening to Nigerians. We want to see how we can create avenues for women to key in and also do great things. We want to see how women can do business from their homes and export.
“We want to create access for exporting. Nigeria should be able to do some things and showcase it out there”she said.
Yobah said the organisation has liaised with Nigerian attachés in Dubai to talk to the women that will be attending the strategic security conference on what it takes to do business out there adding that Dubai chamber of commerce and industry will also speak to Nigerian women on what it takes to do business in their clime.
She said Nigerian products are most times taken to places like Dubai, simply rebranded with no improvement and brought back to the country then sold at higher rates to same Nigerians that produced it originally.
On the choice of Dubai for a conference that is meant for Nigerians, PUWI converner said Dubai has an astronomical growth rate so people want to be there from all over the world, Even Americans want to be in Dubai.
She said “Most businesses all over the world have representation in Dubai. If Nigerian women were able to show their products since we have invited prospectus potential investors and business communities to come and be part of this to see what our women have to show, then we can get a lot of patronage for our women over there. Any product that is unique and that is bought over or that people have interest in, you can be sure that they will contact their parent companies wherever they are in the world.
“Shea butter is good, the Arabians love natural things and we have a lot of it here. It would create export promotion for Nigerian women, thereby getting hard currency into Nigeria. It is not every time we import, we also need to export. We intend to achieve that. There will be a lot of capacity building, which we are going to handle. Women should be trained on how to manage their businesses, etiquette, security opportunity to synergise, to meet people.
“This is a very critical point that we must look into. What prompted the idea of Dubai is to enable women at the grassroots brand their business and get international recognition. So this is to showcase what our Nigerian women do. So, we felt this event in Dubai for sustainable development will create market access for this women to showcase made in Nigerian products. It is giving women the opportunity to bring this things out there and showcase for the world to see, we also try to locate business interest in some of these things they do.
“There will also be extensive networking and great opportunities over there because of the caliber of people we have invited. We need Nigerian women to take advantage of this.”
Security is another basic thing that Nigerian women must be totally in charge of in the homefront and their entire vicinity.
The first contact the child has is with the mother. Mothers are very important to the security architecture of every country, every nation and the world at large hence, PUWI’s determination to ensure mothers are on top of the security situation at all times
Women want to come out and put their heads together to see how we can support the men as they have decided that security is not only responsibility of men but also for women. Men will have less work to do when women are well informed security wise. And when you can support the men, it makes their work out there easier.
If Nigerian women generate more income to the economy and are well on top of security situation, this would make the country conducive and attract foreign investors which would boost our economy all round.
Shea butter is good, the Arabians love natural things and we have a lot of it here. It would create export promotion for Nigerian women, thereby getting hard currency into Nigeria