By Engr. O’tobi Oyetimein mNRCS (tweet:@TitoTobyPhoenix)
“Women play important roles in their families and communities, and are key to our country’s prosperity. I am thrilled to recognize and commemorate these truly inspiring Canadian women,” said the Honourable Rona Ambrose, Minister of Public Works and Government Services, and Minister for Status of Women. We can take great pride in their individual and collective achievements.
Women such as journalist Kathleen Blake Coleman, the “Mother of Nurses in Canada”, Mary Agnes Snively, and activist Kathleen “Kay” Livingstone were pioneers in their respective fields, contributing to the development of their professions and helping to pave the way for women to follow. In addition, we have from other countries, other women like Clara Barton, founder of the American Red Cross, Elizabeth Blackwell, a Doctor and the first woman to graduate from medical school, Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu more commonly known as Mother Teresa of Calcutta, a Roman Catholic nun, founder of the Missionaries of Charity, and recipient of the 1979 Nobel Peace Prize in recognition of her humanitarian work, Shirley Ann Jackson, the first African American woman to earn a doctorate from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The list is endless as we may decide to include the noticeable women in modern politics all over the world who make gargantuan contributions to the betterment of the society they are serving. In Nigeria, a general belief that the women who served in the cabinet of former President Olusegun Obasanjo performed better than their male counterparts between 1999 and 2007 led the 2011 elected President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan to appoint women to 35% of all available positions in his cabinet.
Also, a noteworthy name in Nigeria is Dr Halima Adamu, the first female medical doctor in the predominantly Muslim Northern Nigeria. She currently works as a health consultant with the Nigerian Red Cross and I’ve had the privilege of meeting her personally, a true model for women.
According to Late Ron Hubbard, U.S. religious leader and science-fiction writer, ‘‘a society in which women are taught anything at all but the management of a family, the care of men, and the creation of the future generation, is a society which is on the way out.’’ This view has been held for a long time and is still being held in some areas of the world, a typical and common example is the several stories of women suppression in Pakistan which culminated in the assassination of former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto in 2007.
However, Liberians will be quick to point out the fact that the steady recovery of their country was due to the maternal leadership style of Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, the first democratically elected female president in Africa.
Feminism has often been criticized as Eurocentric—focused on European and North American culture—by black women and by women in the developing world but in recent years, Africa and South America have seen a rejuvenation in the number of females who shape the history of their countries and the world by governance. These women are ultimately shifting the seats of economic dominance and gender balance in the world, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, President of Argentina and 2012 candidate for World Bank presidency, Mrs Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.
Without a shadow of doubt, the relevance of women has moved beyond the simplest strata of society, the family, to the largest platform of societal influence, governance and the women on the scene have proven the capability of women to influence the society more positively than men if given the chance.
Opinion Poll: Is Nigeria ready to elect a Female President (as suggested by two popular Nigerian governors of Lagos and Edo State)?
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