The EU is funding a project in partnership with the federal government aimed at promoting women’s engagement in peace and security in Northern Nigeria to which the EU has doled out the sum of N2 billion.
The project will be implemented by the United Nations (UN Women) in partnership with the UNICEF.
During the agreement signing in Abuja, minister of National Planning, Amb. Bashir Yuguda, signed for Nigeria, while the EU Ambassador to Nigeria, Michel Arrion, signed on behalf of the EU.
Speaking, the supervising minister recalled that in 2009, the federal government signed the 10th EDF Country Strategy paper/ National Indicative Programme (CSP/NIP) with the EU for the implementation of 17 indicative programmes in the country.
“It is gladdening to note that as at 20th February, 2014, the country has committed all the allocated resources in the ”A” envelope for the 10th EDF in the sum of 677 million euros to various development programmes and projects in the areas of governance reforms, water and sanitation, human rights, peace and security, energy, trade and regional integration, health sector development and institutional support,” he said.
He said within the 10th EDF and in recognition of the instability in the country, especially as it affects women in the northern states, the EU approved, after due consultation with the NPC, the programme of support to promoting women’s engagement in peace and security in Northern Nigeria in the sum 10 million euros.
Also speaking, EU Ambassador said women had been active in conflict resolution and peace building, but were rarely allowed in to the formal peace process.
He said it was important to state that women’s involvement in conflict resolution and peace negotiations was just not an issue for women, but also for men.
Similarly, the Minister of Women Affairs, Zainab Maina, said women were the worst hit when it comes to issues of security.
Describing women as the bridge builders, while thanking the EU for their support for Nigerian women.