Chief Olusegun Obasanjo Hosts 2018 International Women’s Day
Hello Dear Reader,
This year International Women’s Day was celebrated all over the world in grand styles; with the former President of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo (GCFR) who also hosted an event today to this regard in conjunction with The African Hub International Women Entrepreneurs at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library, (OOPL) Abeokuta. The event was themed The African Woman In Today’s Global Environment; hosting women from various walks of life and across Nigeria who are into business and corporate leadership.
Present at the event was the Ambassador (Dr.) Robin R. Sanders, the former US Ambassador to Nigeria and CEO FEEDS USA; who was also on the panelist session together with Chief Olusegun Obasanjo to answer questions from the Women Entrepreneurs present.
The event kicked off with an opening speech from the Ambassador who emphasized more Business development in Nigeria with regards to creating value in the community; a projection to fill a service gap. In her speech, she encouraged SMEs to take advantage of the technology space in their businesses.
Amb. Robins Sanders
During the Panelist session, some of the numerous challenges raised by Women present were:Inability to Access funds and Properties; high interest rate when it comes to asking for loans from financial institutions, International trade challenges, Power issue and many more.
Chief Olusegun Obasanjo in his comments to the challenges raised said that over 57 countries are presently going through one issue or the other, however it has been confirmed that in the midst of all the issues, women have been a major victim with Culture and Religion contributing to this. He gave an example that in an average family, the male children have more right to landed properties compared to the female children; which he said it is a wrong concept.
Chief Olusegun Obasanjo during the panel session
As regards the financial institutions, he discussed that these institutions are also into business; however he hope that there will be more consideration for the SMEs in terms of the interest rate. He also described the situation of power in Nigeria can only be solved through indigenous innovation; mentioned Solar system; as he his organization plans to go into that based on the high expenses incurred through power.
Issues around International Trade were both addressed by Chief. Obasanjo and Ambassador Robins; Chief Obasanjo spoke about the issue of certification, we not having recognized certifying centers that can give credibility to the locally made products; Ambassador Robins also said that in order to export locally made products, they must go through some channels to verify and standardize them using an internationally recognized procedures.
The event was later wrapped by the Executive Director of The African Hub International Women Entrepreneurs; Mrs Oluneye Oluwole , who introduced the organization to the participants and the opportunities they stand to gain which include access to business development training, mentoring, grant opportunities among others; she also revealed some of the collaborative projects they are about to launch which include ProjectSTAR, AGOA and many others .
It was indeed a great platform for Women Entrepreneurs in Nigeria to network, as one of our team at Ibadan Insider was present. The event is envisaged to occur annually.
Ambassador (Dr.) Robins Sanders