Life

An Open Letter To The Nigerian Woman

When the World Economic Forum (WEF) published its first Global Gender Gap Report in 2006, there was hope that, a decade later, gender gap would have reduced considerably and that more women would feel empowered and enabled to be whom they aspired to be.

By Chidirim Ndeche

Photo_-Pixabay
Black women. Photo: Pixabay

“[Gender equality] starts with getting girls in school, keeping them there, and making sure they learn.”
– Kristalina Georgieva, CEO, World Bank

When the World Economic Forum (WEF) published its first Global Gender Gap Report in 2006, there was hope that, a decade later, gender gap would have reduced considerably and that more women would feel empowered and enabled to be whom they aspired to be.

The 2017 report indicated that, overall, 68% of the global gender gap had been closed. That figure represented a slight retrogression from that of 2016 and 2015, when the gap was 68.3% and 68.1%, respectively.

Behind that decline is a widening of the gender gap across all four of the report’s pillars: Educational Attainment, Health and Survival, Economic Opportunity and Political Empowerment.

The WEF noted in the report that it would take up to 100 years for the global gender gap to close. The report showed that Nigeria (ranked 122 out of 144 countries) had made notable progress towards closing its gender gaps in women’s estimated earned income, enrolment in secondary education, healthy life expectancy and wage equality for similar work.

However, these achievements are outweighed by a decline in women empowerment and reversals on the educational attainment subindex. In both instances, Nigeria is ranked 135 out of 144 countries.

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