#PowerNOW: 6 Things We Must Do To Build A Nigerian Women's Movement

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During our #PowerNOW Conversation series, we learned 5 key things that need to do to build a Nigerian Women’s Movement:

  1. We Need Collective Action: “We do not need brutality but a collective action. We must continue to do our little bits in various ways but not forgetting that we have a common background and these should form our agenda.”—Harriet ThompsonDeputy British High Commissioner in Nigeria

  2. We Need Steam: “With decades of fighting for our rights, it looks like Nigerian women have lost the steam. We must fight to get this back. Our differences should fire us to greater works rather than pull us apart. We must take definitive steps and understand what it means to take power and not be bystanders. We must fight systems and not men”—Esther Mshelia-Eghobamien, Nigerian Representative to the UN CEDAW Committee

  3. We Need To Re-Represent The GEO Bill: We need to revisit where we are on the GEO bill and take things up from there. Pursuing the GEO bill is beyond activism, we all need to understand what the bill is about to pursue it. We must re-represent this bill not as women, women's groups or the Ministry of Women Affairs--but as Nigerians demanding equal representation. We need male allies and partners”—Olufunke BaruwaCo-Chair, Nigerian Women’s Trust Fund).

  4. We Need Networks: “Women have been too involved in their weaknesses, but we must begin to push from positions of strength... The place of networking with other women on various platforms cannot be over emphasised”—Moji MakanjuolaVeteran Journalist/Former President of the Nigerian Association of Women Journalists

  5. We Must Occupy: “We must occupy our positions without asking for permission. We must unlearn cultures that have not taken us forward and teach our daughters correctly to protect their rights…We must take what belongs to us because life isn’t a pizza man--it doesn’t do deliveries”—Aisha YesufuCo-Founder, #BringBackOurGirls

  6. We Must Partner With The Media: The media plays a critical role in building women and giving women a voice. Women’s groups need to partner with journalists and produce a blue print”—Osasu IgbenedionHost, The Osasu Show.

Blessing Omakwu