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ADDRESS BY THE DIRECTOR-GENERAL, NATIONAL CENTRE FOR WOMEN DEVELOPMENT, ABUJA CHIEF (MRS). MARY EKPERE ETA AT THE GRADUATION CEREMONY OF THE ADVANCE FEMALE ARTISANSHIP PROGRAMME IN COMMEMORATION OF THE 2020 INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY THEME: “I AM GENERATION EQUALITY REALIZING WOMEN’S RIGHTS AND SOCIAL JUSTICE” HELD ON FRIDAY 6TH MARCH, 2020 AT THE AUDITORIUM OF THE NATIONAL CENTRE FOR WOMEN DEVELOPMENT, ABUJA.
It is with a heart filled with gratitude to God Almighty, that I welcome you today to the Graduation ceremony of 106 graduates of the Advanced Female Artisanship Vocational Skills Programme in commemoration of the 2020 International Women’s Day with the theme “I am Generation Equality: Realizing Women’s Rights and Social Justice”.
2. The 2020 International Women's Day (IWD) focuses on the fact that 'An equal world is an enabled world' and to promote such a world, the National Centre for Women Development (NCWD), in collaboration with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH commenced an Advanced Artisanship Training for 100 Female Artisans on the 27th of January 2020 in five (5) different trades namely: Plumbing & Pipe Fitting; Plant & Generator Mechanics; Tiling & Masonry; Refrigeration & Air Conditioning Repairs, and POP.
3. The Training Programme was designed for 40 days to enhance the skills of the identified young female artisans, who participated in the trade test 3 certification with trade test 2 and 1 certifications as role models/agents of change in the Construction Industry.
4. In the course of implementing this programme, we have challenged stereotypes, fought bias and broadened the perceptions of these Female Artisans to improve their situation, and here we are today, celebrating our achievements in commemoration of the 2020 International Women’s Day.
5. I am confident that this new crop of Female Professional Artisans, being launched into the Construction Industry will break gender barriers and make available affordable and excellent artisanship services, while being economically empowered in the Nigerian Construction Industry
6. Permit me to acknowledge our Partners the Skills Development for Youth Employment Programme (SKYE) funded by the German Government and implemented by GIZ and NCWD.
7. For 40 days the NCWD with support from the SKYE – GIZ trained 106 Female artisans in Plumbing and Masonry, Refrigerator and AC repairs, tiling, Generator Repairs and Plaster of Paris (POP), that led to the acquisition of trade test 1 and 2 certification, although the initial arrangement was to train .
8. The whole idea was to empower female youths as skilled workers who will have a competitive edge over their male counterparts; by empowering them with the driving force to start small-scale economic activities and gain employment.
9. The breakdown of the skills of the graduates for the higher class are as follows: Plaster of Paris (POP - 23), Tiling and Masonry (22), Air-condition and Refrigeration (21), Generator Repairs (20) and Plumbing and Piping (20).
10. As part of the Capacity Building Programme, the trainees paid excursion visits to two major players in the construction industry in Nigeria, namely; Setraco Nigeria Limited and Dantata & Sawoe Construction Company (Nigeria) Limited to get firsthand experience of the workings of the industry. Thankfully, both construction companies have indicated their willingness to absorb the participants for their Industrial attachment programme.
11. In the same vein, the trainees also had financial inclusion seminar that dwelt more on how they can access startup funds from the likes of the Central Bank Of Nigeria (CBN) and the Bank of Industry (BOI). We would like to seize this opportunity to call on other relevant agencies with similar funding opportunities to come forward and assist these young ladies with the much needed startup grants. As we continue to contribute our quota in building lives, we are calling on development partners, individuals, and corporate bodies to join us, in creating an equal world for all.
12. Once again distinguished ladies and gentlemen, it is my pleasure to present to you the 106 women and girls that have distinguished themselves in the past 40 days to acquire these skills to shape a brighter future for themselves and their families, against all odds they have bridged the gender gap in the construction industry. Each of them will be going home with a start-up pack and seed grants.
13. Permit me to thank GIZ once again for this effective and beneficial partnership.
14. Thank you all for your attention.

As the country joins the rest of world to commemorate a day set aside to celebrate women all over the world. The Centre under the sterling leadership of the Director-General, Barrister Mary Ekpere-Eta has boldly stated that the 2020 Theme: ”I am Generation Equality: Realizing Women’s Rights and Social Justice”, is very apt.
She disclosed this today at the Intergenerational Dialogue in commemoration of the 2020 International Women’s Day at the auditorium in the Centre ahead of the celebration on Sunday 8th of March.
Welcoming the Honorable Minister for Women Affairs and Social Development, Her Excellency, Dame Pauline Tallen and other dignitaries such as the United Nations System, European Union, British Council, Mercy Corps, ROLAC to the intergenerational Dialogue. The Director-General said that she was pleased with them for steering the wheel at this critical point in the history of Nigerian Women and girls in reviewing how far the country has progressed since the Beijing conference 25 years ago and to galvanized an agenda to pursue the attainment of gender equality and parity in Nigeria.
“I am hopeful that our deliberation during this intergenerational dialogue will be robust, fruitful, impacting and will enhance the advancement of gender equality in the next decade and the attainment of the sustainable development goals (SDGs) in Nigeria”, she affirmed.
NCWD Boss enjoins all to ensure that no one is left out until gender equality is attained in provision of skilled workforce in the construction industries in Nigeria. In her words, “the National Centre for Women Development tomorrow will be graduating 106 women and girls with Trade Test 1 and 11 Certification in Plumbing &Pipe fitting; Plant &Generator mechanics; Tilling &Masonry; Refrigerator &Air conditioning Repairs, and Plaster of Paris(POP)”.
The honorable Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Dame Pauline Tallen in her address disclosed that expectations were very high to showcase Nigeria at the historic outing with delegates working tirelessly to put last minutes finishing touches to arrangements.
She stated that with this global threat of corona virus, which has claimed many lives and is still raging with no cure in sight for now. The CSW64 Session has been scaled down to a one day event.
Dame Tallen said that while we await more updates from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, “I want to commend the indomitable spirit of the Nigerian women; she is innovative and very resourceful. she is able to see opportunities in disappointments; she is forward looking. She represents the hope therefore, standing on these qualities, let me assure you all that at the National level, all hope is not lost as we will organize and mobilize for our own mini-CSW event. We will invite stakeholders to give an account of their activities, since the 25 years of the implementation of the Beijing Declaration and platform”, she asserted.
Speaking during the event, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development, Mrs. Ifeoma Nkiruka Anagbogu applauded the 2020 International Women’s day Theme which encapsulates the struggle of women through-out the world.
She stated that the occasion gives the requisite platform for stock taking on the journey so far for Nigerian women’s rights, empowerments and social justice. In her words, “the occasion is to re-strategize and re –focus attention on the burning issues as well as finding windows of opportunities for gender equality and women empowerment”, she asserted.

Judith Ogbogu Head: Press and Public Relations Unit. 5th March 2020

The Director-General, National Centre for Women Development (NCWD),Barr .Mary Ekpere-Eta has stated that Nigeria would collaborate with Sweden on reduction of maternal mortality rate in Nigeria since, Sweden has a zero maternal mortality rate.
She made the disclosure today when the Swedish ambassador to Nigeria, HE, Carl Michael Grans with his diplomatic delegation had a working tour of the Centre’s facilities.
Describing the tour as timely, the DG solicited the support of the Ambassador in updating the collation of data on maternal mortality indicators in Nigeria which was last updated in 2015 and also, to conduct sensitization using the best practices from Sweden.
The NCWD boss reiterated that the ultimate goal of the programmes offered by the Centre is to contribute to poverty reduction by creating an enabling environment for women beneficiaries in attaining self- sufficiency and financial independence. According to her, “the trainings are carried out through abroad- based, flexible approaches to promote the development competences that are acquired through different methods “she said.
She stated that the approach has reflected in the programmes currently running such as the female Artisanship Training for young Nigerian women on tiling, plumbing, pop, refrigerator &air condition repairs and generator repairs to fill the existing skill gaps in the labor market.
In his remark, the Sweden ambassador to Nigeria, HE, Carl Michael Grans with the diplomatic delegation stated that his country runs feministic policies while expressing huge satisfaction with the Centre’s training programmes which is tailored toward young women acquiring requisite skills to enable them earn a living and contribute meaningfully to nation building.
He noted that seeing women in professions like tiling, plumbing, refrigerator repairs &air condition repairs which in time past was dominated by male folk is encouraging for the country. According to him, “We are trying to engage women in professional lives”, he said.
Earlier on, His Excellency, Ambassador Grans was taking round the facilities of the Centre by his host; the DG, they visited the Nigerian Women Hall of Fame, Marian Babangida main Auditorium, Dora Akunyili Guest House amongst others.
They had a group photograph with the Female artisans in training before departing the Centre.
Judith Ogbogu Head: Press and Public Relations Unit. 4th February 2020

L-R
Honorable Minister for Women Affairs, Dame Pauline Tallen. President of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), His Excellency Prof. Tijjani Muhammad-Bande. Drector General, National Centre for Women Development, Abuja- Mrs Mary Ekpere-Eta.
During the 2019 16-Day of Activism against Gender-Based Violence with the theme, “Orange the World: Generation Equality Stands against Rape!” Venue: Main Auditorium, National Centre for Women Development, Abuja Date: 25/11/2019

The Director-General, National Center for Women Development, (NCWD) Barrister Mary Ekpere-Eta, said that time has come for us as a nation to take stock of our efforts in promoting gender equality, challenges and way forward by Nigerian women.
She asserted this position today in her office during a 3 day national women’s dialogue program tagged “Womenifesto 2019 with the theme: THE NIGERIA WOMEN WANT.
The NCWD boss charged the Nigerian women to reflect as women, “the Nigeria they want”, following the poor outcome of women in the 2019 general election and representations at all levels of governance. According to her, “this occasion is indeed a time for Nigerian women to set the goals for ourselves and with our daughters who are the emerging generation side by side with us to shape a future tomorrow where no one is left behind and gender equality will be a norm”, she averred.
Barr.Ekpere-Eta commended the organizers for bringing women from all walks of life together to brainstorm on issues and concerns that are very dear to womanhood within the frame work of promoting sustainable gender equality and women’s empowerment towards confronting the nation’s challenges, needs and proffering solutions to them.
She stated that it is the second time in the history of Nigeria, when Nigerian women are converging to review and set a charter of demands at the National Centre for Women Development. According to her, this was held during the 2005 conference where the secretariat for 30 to 60million women was situated.
Further, the DG appreciated the presence of great Nigerian women, representatives of international development partners and added that it was fourteen years after the first women’s charter of demands were made in 2005.According to her, “this is a clear demonstration of your commitment to the promotion of gender equality and empowerment of women,” she asserted.
Delivering her remark, H.E Erelu Bisi Fayemi, First lady of Ekiti state said that the Nigeria we want will be safe for all women and girls, a country that nurtures the girl child to a meaningful future. According to her, “A Nigeria where the voice of girls and women are heard, where women and girls are seen as part of the development and growth of the nation, where women are given leadership roles and responsibilities, where women are not seen only as meant for cooking and child bearing, “she stated.
Rendering her solidarity message, a representative of EU/Rule of Law and Anticorruption Project (ROLAC), Priscilla Ankut said that the British Council has pioneered the establishment of Sexual Assault and Referral Centres that offers support to those who have had to undergo the horrific experience of Rape and other forms of sexual violations. Further, she stated that her council is supporting 15SARCs in 10 states of Nigeria and collectively, these SARCs have addressed over 10,000 victims of sexual assault.
Describing today’s event as a strong commitment by well -meaning Nigerian Women, the country director, Amnesty International Nigeria ,Ms.Osai Ojigho stated that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights proclaims in Article 1states that all human beings are born free and equal and urges all women in Nigeria to condemn discrimination against women in all forms and take measures to actualize women’s rights in Nigeria.
Speaking earlier, Iyom Josephine Anenih ,former Minister for Women Affairs lamented the ranking of Nigeria as number 118 out of 134 countries in the Gender Equality Index and as at today just only 15%of women have bank account in Nigeria.She stated that at every educational level women earn less than their male counterparts and in some situation men with less education earn more than better educated female peers.
Present at the event were members of international communities, Media experts and the general public.
Judith Ogbogu Head: Press and Public Relations Unit

The National Centre for Women Development Abuja under the leadership of (Chief) Mrs Mary Ekpete-Eta in partnership with Medicaid Cancer Foundation organised a Walk Away Cancer campaign today 26th October 2019 to raise awareness on cancer and the need for early screening, diagnoses and treatment.
The Medicaid Cancer Foundation (MCF) is a vehicle created by Medicaid to support cancer patients, promote cancer awareness and drive community cancer campaigns for under served populace in Nigeria. We set out to harness more resources both financial and human to aid early screenings, diagnosis, treatment and improve the lives of those living with Cancer.

1. I am truly delighted to welcome you all to this Special Girls Conference in commemoration of the 2019 International Day of the Girl Child with the theme “Unscripted and Unstoppable - Empowering Girls for a Brighter Tomorrow” coming on the heels of the 25th Anniversary of the Beijing+25, it is important for us to take stock of how far the girl child has come since 1995.
2. As you may be aware the United Nations Declaration of 19th December, 2011, instituted the International Day of the Girl-Child, to bring to the fore, the challenges faced by the Girl-Child and to promote girls’ empowerment and the fulfilment of their human rights. The Day was observed worldwide for the first time on 11th October, 2012.
3. In today’s world girls are pushing barriers and challenges that hitherto hindered their progress in life. I have seen girls breaking barriers that go beyond the capabilities of any person, fighting for inclusion in development from all fronts of life through girls movements such as the @GirlsForce and Girl4Girls in Nigeria to raise their voices to stop child marriage, promote self-esteem, girls education and for them to remain in school, learning life skills and standing for their rights to achieve their life dreams.
4. In the last 25 years since the Beijing Platform for Action and its option protocols were ratified by Nigeria, much has been achieved with regards to the Girl Child. However, there is still much to be desired as Child Marriage still exist, there are daily occurrences of Gender Based Violence against the Girl Child, girls are still being used as sex slaves, girls are unable to complete their basic education due to insecurity and vulnerability of the family etc.
5. However, investing in education of girls and ensuring they remain in school is still the best option, as it will enable the girls to reach their dreams and better their livelihood. In this rapidly changing world, girls who miss out of foundational education and life skills will be more vulnerable in the future; this will worsen inequality and re-echo poverty for generations to come. Thus, all hands must be on deck to break existing barriers to Girl Child Education in Nigeria.
6. It is in view of the afore mentioned that the National Centre for Women Development is collaborating with UNICEF Nigeria, Federal Ministry of Education, National Mass Literacy Commission and other partners to join other countries of the world to commemorate the 2019 International Day of the Girl Child. The 2019 edition included: A four day training for 147 girls from different states of the Federation who are being trained on life skills and various lectures.
7. It is expected that the outcome of this Session will be presented to the mother of the Nation, Her Excellency, Mrs, Aisha Muhammadu Buhari, First Lady, Federal Republic of Nigeria and the Honourable Minister of Education so as to draw the attention of policy makers to the critical issues and concerns that have continued to plague the Girl Child, with a view to strategically addressing and including the issues in the strategic implementation plan of the current administration.
8. My Princesses you know you are all special to yourself, just the way you are. I want you girls here to continue to keep pushing the envelope till you burst forth.
9. Ladies and gentlemen, and our dear Princesses you are welcome to today’s event, may we all make it worthwhile.
Thank you and God bless
Thank you. Mary Ekpere-Eta (Mrs.) Director-General/CEO

1. International Day of the Girl Child is celebrated annually on October 11th. It is a day set aside by the United Nations for promoting the rights of girls and addressing the unique challenges they face. The day promotes girls’ human rights, highlights gender inequalities that remain between girls and boys and addresses the various forms of discrimination and abuse suffered by girls around the world. From 2012, various themes have been developed to guide the celebration. The themes support engagement of education sector partners working with girls to amplify their voices and stand up for their rights.
2. This year’s, activities for the celebration is organized under the themes, “Girl Force: Unscripted and unstoppable “and Empowering Girls for a brighter tomorrow. Coming on the heels of the 25th Anniversary of the Beijing+25, it is important for us to take stock of how far the girl child has come since 1995.
3. The activities of the 2019 theme are targeted at building self-consciousness in the girls, empowering girls with knowledge, exposure and skills to create a movement of girls who are a force to reckon with and determined to make change in their lives. The theme also resonates the efforts the NCWD is making to empower and strengthen the girl child agenda towards gender equality and sustainable national development.
4. In today’s world girls are pushing barriers and challenges that hitherto hindered their progress in life. I have seen girls breaking barriers that go beyond the capabilities of any person, fighting for inclusion in development from all fronts of life through girls movements such as the Girlsforce and Girl4Girls in Nigeria to raise their voices to stop child marriage, promote self-esteem, girls education and for them to remain in school, learning life skills and standing for their rights to achieve their life dreams.
5. In the last 25 years since the Beijing Platform for Action and its option protocols were ratified by Nigeria, much has been achieved with regards to the Girl Child. However, there is still much to be desired as Child Marriage still exist, there are daily occurrences of Gender Based Violence against the Girl Child, girls are still being used as sex slaves, girls are unable to complete their basic education due to insecurity and vulnerability of the family etc.
6. However, investing in education of girls and ensuring they remain in school is still the best option, as it will enable the girls to reach their dreams and better their livelihood. In these rapidly changing world, girls who miss out of foundational education and life skills will be more vulnerable in the future; this will worsen inequality and re-echo poverty for generations to come. Thus all hands must be on deck to break existing barriers to Girl Child Education in Nigeria.
7. The National Centre for Women Development as an agency of Government in collaboration with the Office of the First Lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, UNICEF Nigeria, Federal Ministry of Education, National Commission for Mass Literacy , Adult and non Forma Education Abuja, and other partners joins other countries of the world to mark the annual event by organizing a four days conference for the girls and a Girls Special Consultative Forum for girls across the Federation. The outcome of this Session will be presented to the mother of the Nation, Her Excellency, Mrs, Aisha Muhammadu Buhari, First Lady, Federal Republic of Nigeria and the Honourable Minister of Education so as to draw the attention of policy makers and bring to the front burner the critical issues affecting the girl child.
7. Working towards the actualization of the theme in addressing the issue of Information and communication technology, the Centre is running a Girls Coding programme to connect young girls and women to the information super highway to enable them explore opportunities available in the sector. To ensure no one is left out, the Centre trains Girls with Disabilities on the use of ICT, with a special Centre dedicated to the virtually impaired. We are also revitalizing the Girl Child Mentorship Programme to match young girls with young women who have made impact in the society.
9. As a gender research, training and documentation Centre, our doors are opened to more partners interested in working with us, to advance the Nigeria the Girl Child Agenda. I therefore, urge all to avail themselves with the opportunities at the National Centre for Women Development in bridging the existing gaps and empowering Nigerian girls.
10. Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, while I wish all Nigerian Girl a Happy IDG celebration, I ask for your support as always to ensure that GIRLS take their rightful place in the scheme of things in our nation and are INCLUDED, I call on governments at all levels of governance to give girls more opportunities they deserve.
Thank you. Mary Ekpere-Eta (Mrs.) Director-General/CEO

Director-General of the National Centre for Women Development, Mary Ekpere-Eta Esq, has called on Nigerian women to keep faith with Nigeria.
Ekpere-Eta noted in her Independence Day message, that Nigeria needs the commitment and patriotism of women, as they constitute about fifty percent of the country's population.
She said Nigerian women have always demonstrated thier faith in Nigeria, as can be adjudged by their contributions in different aspects of National life.
She further opined that women have contributed so much to the nation's progress and stability.
“ Patriotism and steadfastness are known characteristics of our women. Nigeria's history is replete with women who gave thier all in service to fatherland.
“We have mothers who work very had to contribute to the welfare of their families, women who are community leaders and role models in thier chosen fields. We therefore need women not to relent in making contributions in thier circles of influence because this contributed greatly to our country ‘ s survival”, the statement read.
The NCWD Director-General equally described women as agents of peace and unity, further calling on them keep playing the role of stabilizer.
“From Medicine, business, science , the academia and politics, there is hardly a sector Nigerian women haven't made impact.
“Our Independence Day celebration provides me with another opportunity to commend the women for thier loyalty to Nigeria and seek that they support government policies geared towards empowering them”.

Director-General of the National Centre for Women Development (NCWD), Mary Ekpere-Eta ESQ, has congratulated President Muhammadu Buhari and the All Progressives Congress (APC) on the president’s victory at the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal. She also congratulated Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo.
The Tribunal on Wednesday dismissed the petition by the Peoples Democratic Party and its candidate, Atiku Abubakar, in its entirety.
She said, “The judgment of the tribunal validates the mandate freely given President Muhammadu Buhari by the Nigerian people in the February 23 presidential election.”
Ekpere-Eta hailed President Buhari as an immensely loved leader, who the people have a huge level of trust and confidence in.
She called on Nigerians, especially women to continue to support the current administration, as it is headed by a patriot, who is committed to moving the nation forward.
“In President Muhammadu Buhari, we have a leader, who is dedicated to improving the lot of his people. I call on Nigerian women to continue to express their support for the Federal Government by being part of the solution and not part of the problem.
“This is also the time to call on Nigerians to back the Federal Government’s push to move millions of our people out of poverty. This is as women who are the more economically disadvantaged group will benefit greatly in this regard”, the statement read.

Meeting between representatives of the Federal Ministry of Water Resources, World Bank and National Centre for Women Development, Abuja with Focus on Gender Mainstreaming and Effective Measures for Monitoring and Evaluation of the World Bank Assisted Sustainable Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Project. Date: 8/6/2019
Barr.(Mrs) Mary Ekpere-Eta, Director General, National Centre for Women Development, Abuja, Peters Ojonuba- Industrial WASH Specialist, Abdulyekeen S. Olutade- Industrial Dev. Specialist, Claire Chase SR Economist, Awa Diagne- Sanitation Specialist, World Bank, Micheal Thiert. WASH Consultant, World Bank, Juliet Iordye- Sanitation Specialist, FMWR, Agwuwma Anthony , MSC Specialist, PEWASH, FMWR

The newly appointed Hon. Minister of Women Affairs, Dame Pauline Tallen, today received in audience the management team of the National Center for Women Development, NCWD, being the only parastatal of the Ministry, led by the Director - General, Mrs Mary Ekpere - Eta, Esq.
The Director- General who welcomed and congratulated the Hon. Minister on her appointment, told her the vision and mandate of the Center and some major achievements of the Agency especially the E- dashboard recently introduced to capture sex offenders with the plans of liasing with the Labour Ministry to effect "non- employable status" on such offenders.
Responding, the Hon. Minister expressed thanks and delight to the team noting that she is a key stakeholder who holds the DG in high esteem especially with the recent facelift she has given the Center.
Dame Pauline Tallen also commended the DG for establishing the E- dashboard for sex offenders pledging the Ministrys' support even as she disclosed that she will be focusing on mentoring, girl- child education, more training for Women especially in the science field and IDP camps so as to meet up with the shortfall in partnership with the private sector and International donor agencies.
The Director- General presented to the Hon. Minister some items produced by trainees of the Center, to which Dame Tallen urged her to liaise with the Export Promotion Council and improve on the packaging to attract more patronage and economic enlargement within African Countries. Present at the brief in - house courtesy visit was the Permanent Secretary, Mrs Ifeoma Anagbogu as well as other Directors of the Ministry.

The Country Representative of KOICA (Korea International Cooperation Agency) Mr Woochan Chang and his entourage paid a courtesy visit to the Director General, National Centre for Women Development, Abuja - Barr. (Mrs) Mary Ekpere-Eta on Tuesday 9/7/19 at National Centre for Women Development, Abuja.
The visit affords the Director General of NCWD an opportunity to showcase numerous development strides made by the centre and to seek areas of collaboration in order to continue to impact positively on the lives of girls/women through her developmental programs. .
The Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) was established as a governmental agency dedicated to providing grant aid programs of the Korean government in April 1991. KOICA endeavors to combat poverty and support the sustainable socioeconomic growth of partner countries. By doing so, KOICA establishes and strengthens friendly ties with developing countries. .
Its mission includes promoting amicable and cooperative relations and mutual exchange by rendering support for economic and social development of developing countries. .
The Director General, NCWD, along with her Management team, later took the vising KOICA team on a tour around the center and at the end, they were pleased with what they saw and promised to work with the centre towards achieving her set goals. .
The list of KOICA team members- Country Director, Woochan Chang, Pro. Pycon, Jay Gill, Prof. Lee. Choon Sig, Prof. Chae, Young Soog, Prof. Kwon, Soon Hee & Program Office, Mavis Eta

The great work we are doing at the National Centre for Women Development is being recognized more frequently, as today at an international summit on achieving the SDGs through trade and women empowerment held in Geneva, Switzerland, I spoke on the programmes we have executed under my tenure. Key to my presentation was the Knowledge On the Go Element (KOWGO) element of our training and empowerment programmes.
Bellow is my speech at the event and also attached are pictures from the meeting.
REMARKS BY THE DIRECTOR-GENERAL, NATIONAL CENTRE FOR WOMEN DEVELOPMENT, ABUJA BARR. (MRS) MARY EKPERE- ETA ON “USING KOWGO TO GY AND FINANCIAL INCLUSION FOR NCWD TRAINEES”
PROTOCOLS
The National Centre for Women Development is a Centre for Excellence, charged with the mandate for Gender Research, Training and Documentation. As part of its activities to deliver on the Training aspect of this mandate, the Centre has engaged in capacity development through skills acquisition and empowerment.
2. The ultimate goal of our development programmes is to contribute to poverty reduction by creating an enabling environment for beneficiaries to attain self-sufficiency and financial independence. This we carry out through a broad-based, flexible approach to promote the development of competences that are acquired through different methods. At all levels, our courses are spiced with lectures on the use of English, Civic Education, Health and Hygiene Education, Gender Studies, Basic Book Keeping, Marketing and other topical issues needed to enhance the entrepreneurial skills of our trainees.
3. The training programmes run by the Centre include: Hospitality and Tourism Studies, Fashion Design and Garment Making, Cosmetology and Beauty Therapy, Interior and Out Decoration, Bread making & Pastry, Cake Baking and Sugar Craft, Bead and Jewellery making, Catering, Make-up and Head Gear. At the grassroot level the Centre is involve in strengthening the skills/capacity of women at the Women Development Centres in the Local Government Areas and in the IDP camps.
4. Other programmes include the Female Artisanship trainings in Refrigerator and Air Conditioning work, Plant & Generator Repairs, Plumbing and Pipe Fitting, and Tiling & Masonry. The Female Artisans programme became very necessary and important giving the changing world of work. To this end, NCWD designed the training programme to move women and young girls from the stereotype traditional skills to withstand the growing demand for skilled workforce in the Nigerian construction industry.
5. However, what is clearly lacking from the various projects and programmes mentioned above is the ability for the trainees to source and access finance for start-up and market availability for their products.
6. Finance is very essential to growth, development and general welfare because it affects business activities and basic human needs. Financial Inclusion is achieved when adults have easy access to a broad range of formal financial services that meet their needs and are provided at an affordable cost. The introduction of KOWGO “Knowledge on the Go” application, has exposed the NCWD trainees to limitless opportunities the smart phones in their hands can do and change their lives, especially to accessing funding and reaching available market for their products. Downloading the application and utilizing it has increased the knowledge base of the trainees and put the world placed in their fingertips. The KOWGO Technology has exposed trainees to:
i. Accessibility: within easy reach of the customer. This includes physical distance but also confidence to access and also where they can access funding.
ii. Affordability: price affordable even for low-income groups and easy accessibility to financial institutions
iii. Diversity/Choice: products need that meet the customer’s needs and where available, so that he/she can choose the most suitable one.
iv. Usage: enable low-income customers use financial products.
v. Simplicity/Convenience: low income clients can understand application and is easy to use
7. Financial Inclusion has enabled many of the unbanked participants to have access to financial services that would enhance their economic opportunities, boost productivity and contribute to economic development, as it promotes:-
• Increased savings - More savings help people make investments as well as use funds for emergencies or unexpected events; Access to Finance (Credit/Loans):
• Access to credit ensures Increased productivity and output of microenterprises, allowing businesses to grow;
• E-Payment Services: Electronic payment services ensure convenient and affordable access to financial products and services. It also allows governments reduce leakages;
• Insurance: As a risk mitigation measure, insurance ensures that small businesses do not worry about unexpected events that can slow them down or bring them to a complete halt;
• Pension: Pension provides people with access to funds set aside upon retirement from active service.
8. The KOWGO application has enable NCWD Trainees to start thinking outside the box and making better decisions concerning their businesses.

The school bell may stop ringing, but a holiday is a great time for all kinds of learning opportunities for kids. National Centre for Women Development Abuja is providing another opportunity for parents to enroll their children in computer courses at a discounted rate.To Register please click HERE

First Lady commends Ekpere-Eta for repositioning NCWD ….Says Centre finally meeting aspiration of founder (s) ..Joyous graduates recommend training for others
Nigerian First Lady, Dr. Aisha Buhari, on Friday commended the Director-General of the National Centre for Women Development (NCWD), Mary Ekpere-Eta Esq for repositioning the agency.
Mrs. Buhari said Ekpere-Eta has led the NCWD in actively carrying out its mandate, even as the reputation of the agency has greatly improved among stakeholders in the last two years.
Speaking at the combined graduation ceremony of students of Vocational Skills & Artisanship Training programme which took place today, the First Lady called on the graduates to boldly commence on the trades for which they have been certified.
“It is now that we have a Centre that is living up to the goals for which it was established”, she stated.
Mrs. Buhari was represented at the event by Dr. Hajo Sani (Special Assistant (Admin) to the First Lady. She enjoined all the graduates to make the best use of the skills acquired in order to be self-reliant and productive.
Ekpere-Eta in her speech urged the gradaunts to fully explore their potentials, as they not only have been trained, but also supplied with equipment to commence business.
“The ultimate goal of our programmes is to contribute to poverty alleviation by creating an enabling environment for beneficiaries to attain self-sufficiency and financial independence”, she said.
Speaking on behalf of the gradauates, Ruth Nyata and Mary Peter expressed gratitude for the opportunity to lean and be certified in life-changing skills. “We will do our best to impart society with what we have learnt”, Mary assured.
Also at the event to encourage the successful participants was the legendry Mary Onyali, Olympian and Super Falcons Assistant Coach, Maureen Madu and National President of the National Council of Women Societies (NCWS), Dr. Laraba Shoda.
Women and young female artisans from different parts of the country, selected through a merit- based process were trained in various trades such as bricklaying and masonry, AC/fridge repairs, plumbing and pipe fitting and generator repairs from 16th to 28th June 2019.

Mrs. Buhari, Gov. Sanwo-Olu, wife, lead dignitaries as Dr. Stella Adadevoh, Kudirat Abiola, Remi Tinubu, others are inducted into the Nigerian Women Hall of Fame
*Stella Okoli, Mrs. Pricilla Ekwueme-Eleje, Sen. Binta Garba, Prof. Adenike Osofisan, Iyalode Alaba Lawson, Iyom Josephine Anenih, Barr. Oby Nwankwo, Mma Regina Achi Nentui, Hajiya Bilikisu Yusuf, Mrs. Adebimpe Balogun are also inducted
It is likely to go down as the most glamorous event held at the National Centre for Women Development (NCWD) in the last decade. It is today’s induction ceremony for female icons into the highly prestigious Nigerian Women Hall of Fame.
The Nigerian Women Hall of Fame is one the institutions at the NCWD.
Wife of the President, Dr. Aisha Buhari, who was the Special Guest of Honour at the star-studded event, held at the Main Auditorium of the NCWD was joined by Governor Babajide Sanwa-Olu of Lagos State, his wife Ibijoke and a long list of other dignitaries to celebrate the new inductees.
Director-General of the NCWD, Mary Ekpere-Eta Esq, led the management of the Centre, who received plaudits for organizing the high octane ceremony to honour deserving Nigerian female trailblazers.
The physician who gave her life to halt the spread of the Ebola Virus, Dr. Stella Adadevoh, martyr for democracy Alhaja Kudirat Abiola, First Female Editor of a national daily, the Late Hajiya Bilikisu Yusuf, and the First ever Female LG chairperson, Mma Regina Achi Nentui were inducted today.
First woman to win elections three consecutive times into the Senate and former Lagos First Lady, Sen. Oluremi Tinubu, successful industrialist and founder of Emzor Pharmaceuticals, Dr. Stella Okoli, First Woman to sign the Nigerian currency, Mrs. Pricilla Ekwueme-Eleje, First Woman to win election into the National Assembly from two different states (Kaduna and Adamawa) Sen. Binta Garba, First Woman to obtain a PhD in Computer Science, Prof. Adenike Osofisan and First Female President of NACCIMA, Iyalode Alaba Lawson and iconic gender equality icon and former minister Iyom Josephine Anenih were also inducted into the Women's Hall of Fame.
Mrs. Buhari who spoke through her representative to the event, the Senior Special Assistant to the President, Dr. Hajo Sani, hailed the new inductees as role models. According to her, the inductees have and will still inspire many girls and women to do great exploits. She urged that women join the Buhari Administration in promoting transparency and accountability in the public and private sector.
She commended the NCWD for conducting a thorough research through which inductees were selected. Permanent-Secretary of the Federal Ministry for Women Affairs and Social Development, Mrs. Nkiruka Anagbogu, stated her support for the NCWD performing its mandate by promoting successful women as models for excellence. Earlier in her welcome address, chairperson of the NCWD board, Yimebe Joi Nunieh stressed the commitment of the Centre to remain the beckon of hope for women.
Ekpere-Eta in her welcome address reiterated her pledge, that the induction ceremony will be held at timely intervals to adequately present the achievements women and their contribution to national development. She expressed confidence that a large number of girls and young women will be encouraged to strive for the very best with the recognition of the new inductees.
The event also witnessed goodwill messages from dignitaries such as the Secretary to the Federal Government, Mr. Boss Mustapha, who was represented at the ceremony. Chairperson of the Diaspora Commission, Hon. Abike Dabiri sang for and commended the inductees. Women Leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Hajiya Salamatu Umar-Eluma described the new set of inductees as heroines whose labour has been rewarded.
The goodwill messages were quickly followed by the presentation of commemorative plaques to the inductees. Mrs. Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu, Dr. Hajo Sani, Hon. Abike Dabiri and Federal Ministry of Women Affairs Permanent-Secretary Mrs. Nkiruka Anagbogu at different times joined the NCWD Director-General to present the glittering plaques to the happy inductees.
Posthumous honors were received by family members. Kudirat Abiola’s plaque was presented to her daughter, Hafsat Abiola-Castell, with Dr. Stella Adadevoh’s niece, Niniola Williams representing her. For the Late Bilikisu Yusuf, two of her children were on hand to pick her plaque, same for Barr. Oby Nwankwo, whose son and brother picked up her plaque. For Mma Regina Achi-Nentui, educationist wife of the former Senate leader, Sen. Victor Ndoma-Egba, Amaka, was her representative.
Some of the dignitaries at today’s ceremony include, Senator Solomon Olamilekan (Yayi), Sen. Musiliu Obanikoro, Hon. Jumoke Okoya-Thomas, wife of Osun State Governor, Kafayat Oyetola, wife of former governor of Osun State, Alhaja Sherrifat Aregbesola and Speaker of Lagos State House of Assembly, Hon. Mudashiru Obasa.

New Set Of Inductees To Be Inaugurated Into Nigerian Women Hall Of Fame June 10 *President Buhari Committed To 35 Percent Representation For Women-Ekpere-Eta Director-General of the National Centre for Women Development (NCWD), Mrs. Mary Ekpere-Eta, on Monday announced that a new set of female trailblazers will be inducted into the highly prestigious Nigerian Women Hall of Fame.
The event scheduled for Monday June 10 will have the Her Excellency, the Wife of the President, Dr. Aisha Buhari as Special Guest of Honour. Speaking a media conference on the forthcoming event, Ekpere-Eta said, the new inductees emerged from a rigorous process, which also included research on women with career firsts and other landmark achievements which set apart those who will join a long list of other female achievers in the Hall of Fame.
The NCWD Director-General stressed the importance of honouring outstanding women as it promotes meritocracy, even as it will greatly inspire many more young women to aspire reach for the very top.
She also told journalists that the event will feature the official unveiling of the photograph and induction of the Wife of the President, Dr. Aisha Buhari in the second coming of the Buhari Administration in upholding the tradition of the Centre of keeping records of the wives of Heads of State and Presidents of the country.
She said: “Most of you may want to ask why a Nigerian Women Hall of Fame? My response is that available statistics reveal that Nigerian women have always been dynamic, playing active roles in literally all spheres of development. Yet their achievements were hardly documented.
“This explains the rationale behind the creation of this highly prestigious edifice for the enrichment of public understanding and appreciation of the diverse contributions Nigerian women make to society. The goal is to establish the unique and immense productive capacities of women and make their works and achievements more visible in national development records”.
“The Nigerian Women Hall of Fame currently features a comprehensive display of records of women in pre-colonial days in the form of pictures, plaques, artifacts and memorabilia of those who played legendary roles in trade and commerce, politics and inter-tribal wars, etc. So also are records of contemporary Nigerian women who are playing leading roles in different aspects of the Nigerian society.
“We are confident that this will help to project women as active contributors in National development. In effect, development programmes will be viewed in their true perspective as fundamental to harness the full potentials of women as equitable partners in development.
“The Hall of Fame also provides role models for younger girls and the society at large on the unlimited potentials of women in the Nigerian society”, she further said.
The criteria for selection of inductees into the Nigerian Women Hall of Fame are: First Woman, historic or living to achieve recognition in the field of endeavor or a lifetime of achievement in that field. A significant statewide contribution to arts, athletics, business, government, philanthropy humanities, science and education, etc, and the enduring value of her achievement and lasting importance of such contribution.
Responding to questions from journalists on the demands from women for the second term of President Buhari, Ekpere-Eta said women are looking up to the President to make the much sought 35 percent representation for women in government a reality.
“We want economic growth, sustainable development and peace. But also important to us is the appointment of women into office in order for Nigeria to achieve 35 percent representation for women in government.
“President Buhari stated his support for 35 percent female representation during the 2018 Female Aspirants Summit organized by the office of the Wife of the President and the NCWD . I know that he is a man of his words. Our President someone who keeps to his words and therefore can be looked upon to bringing in the right number of qualified women into public office. It is even more important to us as women didn’t post a good showing at the polls”, she said.

A total of 22 Female trailblazers will be inducted on Monday June 10 into the highly prestigious Nigerian Women Hall of Fame located in the National Centre for Women Development. Her Excellency, the Wife of the President, Dr. Aisha Buhari will be the Guest of Honour at the event during which Nigerian women with many firsts will join the galaxy of stars already celebrated in the Hall of Fame. Reviving long held traditions of the National Centre for Women Development which have waned, form an important aspect of the Director General's leadership philosophy. The last time female trailblazers were inaugurated into the Hall of Fame was in 2007.Read More

A seminar presented by American Corner Abuja National Centre for Women Development in Collaboration with ThrivingUp Initiative. seminar tagged "Nutrition and your growing baby" was for expectant, new and nursing mothers, to educate them on adequate nutrition in infancy and how it is essential for survival of newborns and life long health and wellbeing. A presentation on exclusive breastfeeding was made and the women were educated on the many benefits of breastfeeding to infants and how to successfully initiate and sustain exclusive breastfeeding for the WHO and UNICEF recommended duration. 7th May. 2019

The Director General Barr. (Mrs) Mary Ekpere-Eta, National Centre for Women Development, Abuja, takes the visiting President of the 73rd UN General Assembly - Her Excellency - Maria Fernanda Espinoza Graces, on a tour around the different sections of the Women's Hall of Fame. The Women Hall of Fame inducts distinguished Nigerian women through a rigorous selection process based on their contributions to the social, economic or cultural aspects of society; the significant national or global impact and results of change due to their achievement; and the enduring value of their achievements or changes. Date: 7th May 2019. Venue: National Centre for Women Development, Ncwd Abuja

Director-General of the National Centre for the National Centre for Women Development (NCWD), Mrs. Mary Ekpere-Eta ESQ, has described the holy month of Ramadan as a good opportunity for Nigerian Muslims to pray for the peace and progress of the nation. She therefore called on Muslims across the country to prioritize supplications for the peace, stability and prosperity of Nigeria during the fasting period. Ekpere-Eta in her Ramadan message urged that Muslim women to pray for strength, intelligence and courage for personnel of the police, the armed forces and other security agencies battling to stop criminals whose condemnable actions have made life difficult for many.
She also asked that Muslim women put the nation’s leaders in prayer, especially President Muhammadu Buhari, for Almighty Allah to further endow him with wisdom and courage to confront the challenges the country is facing. The NCWD Director-General commended women for ensuring the comfort of their families and extending the same treatment to members of their communities during the holy month of Ramadan. She prayed that the strong sense of community and oneness that characterizes the holy months is upheld among Muslims and people of other faith, who join their Muslim friends in commemorating a critical aspect of their religion. The statement read in part: “I would like to start by commending Nigerian women for remaining pillars of love and sacrifice during the month of Ramadan. In majority of homes, it is women who wake up early to prepare Suhur and they rush back from work to serve Iftar in the evening. Women are also involved in Zakat, making life easier for those making ends meet.
“Through their commitment, women have ensured that their families observe Ramadan with ease. More commendable is the fact that women make it easy to extend the warmth and generosity that makes Ramadan a season of hope and peace, to the less privileged by making provision for persons outside their families”. “I encourage persons of other faith, who have always joined their Muslim friends in making Ramadan a period of sharing to continue with this tradition that has helped in unifying Nigeria, even as I ask that women remember to pray for the peace and prosperity of the nation. “It is my prayer that the Almighty Allah specially blesses Nigeria and that He grants the requests of the faithful during the holy month”.

Closing Ceremony of the 3 day training for Kids on the Journey of Becoming organised by (American Corner Abuja) National Center for women Development in collaboration with Prime Age Development Initiative. Presentation was made by Barr. Bunmi Aina-Graig on ‘An ideal outlook in and outside the home’ 2. the second Presentation on Integrity at a moment of choice was made by Barr. Angela E. Odunukwe 3. Viewing party was also organised for the children, they watched HOOP DREAMS and RUBY BRIDGES 4. Presentation of Certificates by the DG NCWD, Ably represented by the Ag. DPRS 5. Vote of Thanks by the Ag.DPRS NCWD. Mallam Ismaila Baba

A 3 day training for Kids on the Journey of Becoming organised by (American Corner Abuja) National Center for women Development in collaboration with Prime Age Development Initiative. The training is for children on personality issues. It's meant to open their eyes to the effect of the choices they make, guide them on how to conduct themselves, guide them on how to take good decisions and also widen their horizon. In addition the training will provide information that will help them build a graceful personality and a bright future

In her speech, the Director General , National Centre for Women Development, Barr. (Mrs) Mary Ekpere-Eta said the youths are tomorrow's leaders and she enjoined the participants to take their studies seriously. She further advised them to use the knowledge gained to improve on themselves as ICT is currently the driver for growth and development.Date: 20th April 2019. Venue: ICT Department, National Centre for Women Development, Abuja.
6-Day ICT Coding & Animation Training for Children. We want to specially thank the Director General, National Centre for Women Development Abuja- Barr.(Mrs) Mary Ekpere-Eta, Dr (Mrs) Ajani- Permanent Secretary, Head of Service, Mrs Adepoju Folasade (Librarian- National Libratry), & Interape Ltd, for their various contributions towards making this training a success.

Director-General of the National Centre for Women Development, Mrs. Mary Ekpere-Eta, has called on Nigerian women to rededicate themselves to building safe and prosperous communities. Ekpere-Eta made the call in her Easter message, adding that Nigerian women have over the years contributed immensely to the peace and progress of their families and communities.
She said women are accustomed to making sacrifices which are reminiscent of the ultimate sacrifice made by Jesus Christ, whose trial and crucifixion is remembered during Easter. She pleaded with Nigerian women to pray for a peaceful transition at the federal and state level, saying that Nigeria’s stability can be traced to the prayers of its citizens, especially the womenfolk. The NCWD Director-General also asked that women lead their families in remembering members of the armed forces fighting to keep country safe; the less privileged and even those in prisons in their prayers this season.
“Easter is that time that we remember the incomparable sacrifice of Jesus Christ. We look back and admire Christ’s great show of love, his humility and compassion for the poor. “It is my prayer Nigerian women will be reinvigorated by the essence of Easter, to display these virtues which Christ lived by in their homes and the society at large”, the statement read in part.

#1: Coding helps with school & academic performance Children that learn to code can improve and develop multiple facets of their educational syllabus including maths, writing, and creativity. It can also help to increase their confidence at school or in other social situations.
#2: Coding helps with maths & logical problem solving From a maths perspective, coding is known to help kids visualise more abstract concepts in a fun format that lets them apply mathematics to real-life problem solving. Computer science and coding isn’t just about developing a program to solve or perform tasks. It’s also about logical problem solving, using the core basics of mathematics.
#3: Coding helps with writing skills & creativity When it comes to writing, computer programming can also let your child improve their written skills, developing a more concise and structured approach to storytelling and the English language.
#4: Coding helps with confidence Parents with children that have been on FunTech coding course or class will often report that their child’s confidence and communication has improved. This can be put down to not just the basics of learning new tasks out of their comfort zone, but also having to collaborate with other children in a classroom-based environment such as the ones we offer.
#5: Coding is fun! Whilst computer programming is very much a logic-based activity, it’s also very creative as we have already touched upon.
#6: Coding isn’t just about computers In modern life, almost every device we interact with on a daily basis is powered by a computer. Whether that’s a smartphone, domestic appliance, cash machine, or a traffic light system when crossing the road. It’s not just about computers, laptops, gaming consoles, or tablets. We believe that it’s important for children to understand that someone has written coding instructions for computers to help us with everyday challenges and tasks we perform.That will help your child to visualise the possibilities for how coding and technology can solve problems of the future.
#7: Coding is the language of the world Software is a critical component that touches so much in our lives, and in fact, could be seen to be the language of the world.
#8: Coding helps with core soft skills Once your child starts to learn to code, they will move through more and more complex processes and problems.
#9: Coding can help to change the world Kids that start early and learn to code from a young age are going to be the pioneers of the future. #10: Coding helps kids with storytelling We use a program called Scratch to teach kids to code. It’s a visual language developed by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and is perfect for any sort of storytelling.
#11: Coding helps kids achieve their dreams Dan Costolo, the CEO of Twitter said: “If you can program a computer, you can achieve your dreams. A computer doesn’t care about your family background, your gender, just that you know how to code. But we’re only teaching it in a small handful of schools, why?”
#12: Holiday Coding classes can keep your kids busy
#13: Coding helps to future proof your child’s job prospects According to research conducted by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills, almost half of science, technology, engineering, and maths jobs are hard to fill. With your child potentially reaching employment age in the next decade, having a coding and programming background could mean they are very much in demand in the 2020s. There should be no fears for them finding a suitable career.
CAUTION But in the process of learning how to code, don’t forget about the other things. Help them learn to “tech,” and explore game development possibilities, 3D printing, or video production if that's what better suits them. Immerse in photography if that's truly what they want to do as a hobby or even a future career. Have them get skilled in marketing, negotiation, promotion, and more… or learn how to become a leader. There is a list of learning opportunities, and that list goes on and on. Coding can take you far, but you must also possess the complementary skills to make your creations thrive.