Friday, March 18, 2016

Why Nigerian Senate rejected Gender and Equal Opportunity Bill

Nigerian Gender and Equal Opportunity Bill
In Nigeria, there are 109 senators. 7 out of 109 senators are women. The Gender and Equal Opportunity Bill entitled, “A bill for an Act to Incorporate and enforce certain provisions of the United Nations Convention on the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women, the Protocol of the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights on the rights of women in Africa, and other matters connected therewith, 2016 (SB. 116)'' was sponsored by the Senate Minority Whip, Senator Biodun Olujimi (PDP, Ekiti South). In a session exclusively males, the bill failed in first reading. Here are the top reasons the gender equality bill failed to pass:

 The Gender and Equal Opportunity Bill by the Nigerian Senate. The Bill would have addressed:
  1. Discriminatory practices against women: The bill set out equality for women in marriage and divorce and inheritance rights for girls and widows - stating that they should not face "inhuman, humiliating or degrading treatment".
  2. Religious and cultural sensitivities: The bill defied sharia law, which is recognized by the constitution in Nigeria. 
  3. Participation in governance: The rejected bill also called for women to be able to participate in politics without any restrictions or barriers 


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