Governor of Borno State, Prof. Babangana Zulum, yesterday urged governments in the country to give priority attention to social welfare of their citizenry to address the problems of poverty and insecurity rocking the country.
Zulum who spoke as the special guest of honour at the closing ceremony of the 22nd National Women’s Conference organised by the Committee of Wives of Lagos State Officials (COWLSO) said “issues of social welfare as a way of pulling many Nigerians out of poverty and tackling insecurity must be increased through women empowerment.”
Dwelling on the theme of the conference, “Spring Forth, Stand Out”, Zulum who was represented by the attorney-general of Borno State, Auwal Abubakar, said individuals, groups and organisations and government at all levels must collaborate and “strive hard to improve the situation of young women in Lagos and Nigeria.”
Zulum added that, “Women are usually confronted with socio-cultural hurdles that prevent their participation in governance and development”, saying “these hurdles undermine women’s ability to fully contribute to societal development which is exacerbated by poverty and lack of skills and formal education in our communities.
“We must therefore recognise community leadership and civic engagement skills as essential tools that will enable young women to participate in governance and development.
“There is the need for collective action by men, women and youths in addressing existing barriers. This can generate more innovative and effective outcomes”
In her remarks, the wife of Lagos State Governor, Dr. Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu, said it was time for women to lend their voices to insecurity issues and poverty eradication in the country.
Mrs. Sanwo-Olu who said of over 261 borders of the Country, over 137 were porous, said the situation demanded firm contributions from all strata of the society to address the challenges.