IWD: FOMWAN seeks women emancipation in digital world

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…condemns gender gap in digital access

The Federation of Muslim Women’s Association in Nigeria (FOMWAN) has called on Nigerian Government to provide enabling environment for women folk by unlocking their technology’s potentials and grant them easy access to digital world so as to compete favourably with men counterparts.

The association blamed persistent gender gap in digital access, describing it as a major clog that keeps women from unlocking their technology’s full potential.

The  FOMWAN Amirah, Kwara State branch, Hajia Nihma Labaika disclosed this today (March 8, 2023)  in a message issued to commemorate International Women Day.

Labaika said the theme for this year’s International Women’s Day is ‘DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality’.

She explained that the underrepresentation of women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education and careers remains a major barrier to their participation in tech design and governance.

“More so, the pervasive threat of online gender-based violence – coupled with a lack of legal recourse – too often forces them out of the digital spaces they do occupy” . 

“Since this year’s International Women’s Day is being observed, a few days after, Nigeria elected a new president, and FOMWAN urges the incoming administration to provide an enabling environment for women/girls, the one that will inspire them into the tech world. While it is pertinent to boost digital literacy level amongst Nigerians, it is even more important for women, in order to empower them for the 21st century challenges, as well as, positioning them for global opportunities due to the role they play in family and the society, to encourage women to aspire to attain peak in their chosen career. Brain is not gender related and knowledge is like raindrops, once it drops, any brain can accommodate it.

“FOMWAN celebrates every woman on the planet for the much love and beauty she brings into the world. Obviously, the presence of women in any society always usher in many goodies. According to the United Nations (UN), women make up only 22 per cent of artificial intelligence (AI) workers globally.  Similarly, a global analysis of 133 AI systems across industries discovered that 44 per cent demonstrate gender bias; and a survey of women journalists from 125 countries found that 73 per cent had suffered online violence in the course of their work.

“Meanwhile, from the earliest days of computing to the present age of virtual reality and artificial intelligence, UN attests that women have made untold contributions to the digital world in which we increasingly live. These feats have been against all odds, in a field that has historically neither welcomed nor appreciated women. In Nigeria, women, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), make up only 22 per cent of the total number of engineering and Technology University graduates on a yearly basis, There is undeniably a gender inequality in all businesses, and one of the historically male-dominated industries is technology” Amira added.

International Women’s Day is a day set aside by the United Nations (UN) to celebrate women’s contributions to the society, economy, culture, and politics. It is also an occasion to consider the steps taken towards achieving gender equality in all spheres of life and the work that is to be done to guarantee 

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