Greetings to the kind and generous people of Rivers State, and welcome to another episode of Rivethics on Radio, our character-building weekend show. Please remember that class is not just about style and poise. Being classy also means always being kind, respectful and polite, even to the undeserving. Our topic today is the International Women’s Day, with the Theme, “Press for Progress”
The International Women’s Day is celebrated in many countries around the world. It is a day when women are recognized for their achievements without regard to distinction, whether national, ethnic, linguistic, cultural, economic or political.
The Charter of the United Nations, signed in 1945, was the first international agreement to affirm the principle of equality between women and men. Since then, the UN has helped create a historic legacy of internationally-agreed strategies, standards, programmes and goals to advance the status of women worldwide. Over the years, the UN and its technical agencies have promoted the participation of women as equal partners with men in achieving sustainable development, peace, security, and full respect for human rights. The empowerment of women continues to be a central feature of the UN’s efforts to address social, economic and political challenges across the globe. I give big kudos to the UN for lighting the flame and leading the charge.
This year’s International Women’s Day comes on the heels of unprecedented global movement for women’s rights, equality and justice. This has taken the form of global marches and campaigns, including #MeToo and #TimesUp in the United States of America and their counterparts in other countries, on issues ranging from sexual harassment and femicide to equal pay and women’s political representation.
A perfect instance that exemplifies this year’s theme, Press for Progress, is the Time’s Up Movement. The Time’s Up is a movement against sexual harassment and was founded on January 1, 2018, by Hollywood celebrities in response to the Weinstein scandal and #MeToo movement that followed it. As of February 2018, it has raised $20 million for its legal defense fund, and gathered over 200 volunteer lawyers, barely 2 months after it started. That is a perfect example of massive action to attack a major problem. This needs to be duplicated all over the world.
I call on all women advocates and activist groups in Rivers State and Nigeria to ride on the current global momentum and transform same into more action, to empower more women in all settings, rural and urban, and work more relentlessly to support women to claim their rights and realize their full potential. The African woman has borne pain, endured hardship and known neglect. But like the proverbial tea bag, she has shown how strong she is in hot water. But there is no force equal to a woman determined to rise. Our time to rise is now. Let’s go for it. Enough of much talk and little action.
Our guest speaker this weekend is, Mrs. Ulari Fiona Nwaogazie, Executive Director at the Orzora Centre for Gender Equality and Youth Development. She will be sharing her insights on the subject. Please enjoy the episode.
Our wonderful Rivers people, please remember to always let your manners speak for you.
God bless and keep you and your families and God bless Rivers State
Justice (Mrs.) Eberechi Suzzette Nyesom-Wike,
The Wife of the Governor of Rivers State and
Initiator of the RivEthics Character Development Programme
You can also listen to and download the Pidgin English version of this Episode below