International Day of Rural Women: 35% affirmative action is not a plea ~ Adaora Onyechere


The International Day of Rural Women is observed every year on October 15 to recognize the crucial role and contribution of rural women. Themed; “I am Generation Equality: Realizing Women’s Rights”.

Rural women are active agents of economic and social change and environmental protection who are, in many ways and to various degrees, constrained in their roles as farmers, producers, investors, caregivers and consumers.

Throughout ancient and modern history, women have collaborated and lead purposeful action to redress inequality in the hope of a better future for their communities, children and themselves. Whether through bold well-documented action or through humble resistance that never made it into the history books, women have united for equality and achievement forever.

International Women’s Day continues to be a powerful platform globally that unifies tenacity and drives action for gender parity, while celebrating the social, cultural, economic and political achievements of women.

We all over the world are watching as Nigerian youth raise their voices in protest against police brutality, bad governance, bad leadership; We also must raise our voices to seek and ask and demand that the world all over especially in Nigeria understand the need for mainstreaming women amongst all sectors that the right to 35% affirmative action is not a plea but a demand.

This day as we commemorate the international rural woman’s day, we also demand that the voice at the rural areas is also emboldened and that can also be done if policies are activated and implemented and we start by saying no more to gender inequality, no more to marginalization of women, no more to silencing the voices of women.

We demand that Nigeria looks at gender equality and mainstreaming for all persons as a mandate, as a call to their responsibility, not as a plea but from a disadvantaged number.

Across the continents let the values that guide International Women’s Day; Justice, Dignity, Hope, Equality, Collaboration, Tenacity, Appreciation, Respect, Empathy, Forgiveness guide us – recognizing to honor and celebrate the important and impressive achievements of women globally.

Happy International Day of Rural Women

Adaora Onyechere
Head, Women and Gender Affairs Cluster Committee
African Union ECOSOCC

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