Åsa Regnér, Assistant Secretary General and UN Women Deputy Executive Director Visits Nigeria to strengthen partnerships with UN Women’s key partners in Nigeria (DAY 2 )

Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Day two of the UN Women Deputy Executive Director Åsa Regnér’s mission to Nigeria started with an interactive meeting on gender-based violence in Nigeria with the Spotlight Initiative partners and European Union delegation. The Deputy Executive Director (DED), accompanied by UN Women Nigeria Country Representative Comfort Lamptey and UN Women Regional Director for West & Central Africa, Oulimata Sarr, joined the Head of Development Cooperation at the European Union to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Kurt Cornelis and Nigeria’s Minister of Women Affairs, Honorable Pauline K. Tallen to discuss existing opportunities to work together with UN Women in addressing gender-based violence, harmful and discriminatory cultural practices.

UN Women Deputy Executive Director Åsa Regnér, the Head of Cooperation at the European Union to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Kurt Cornelis and Nigeria’s Minister of Women Affairs, Pauline K. Tallen during interactive session.
UN Women Deputy Executive Director Åsa Regnér, the Head of Development Cooperation at the European Union to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Kurt Cornelis and Nigeria’s Minister of Women Affairs, Honorable Pauline K. Tallen during interactive session. Photo: UN Women/Alpha Ba

"The Spotlight Initiative is about building on existing structures  and supporting activists and service providers working on the frontlines to prevent  and respond to violence against women and girls"

The UN Women delegation led by the DED, Åsa Regnér, held a meeting with a  cross-section of Women in Politics (WIP) to discuss the low participation and representation of women in politics, the outcome of last election held in in 2019 and the current situation and challenges faced by women, as well as the way forward in terms of more commitment from different stakeholders.

UN Women Deputy Executive Director Åsa Regnér and her delegation with a cross-section of  women in politics.
UN Women Deputy Executive Director Åsa Regnér and her delegation with a cross-section of women in politics. Photo: UN Women/Amalachukwu Ibeneme
Later  in the day, the DED and her delegation, met with young female entrepreneurs in the private sector  to hear their success stories and address the challenges that women in the private sector face ranging from access to finance/access to market, access to actionable investment/funding information, lack of collateral, discriminatory regulations and gender bias. The delegation  siezed the opportunity to reiterate UN Women’s work on supporting women-owned businesses and gender-responsive procurement; and to urge private sector partners to sign on to the Women’s Empowerment Principles (WEPs).
UN Women Deputy Executive Director Åsa Regnér and delegation with young female entrepreneurs and CEOs.
UN Women Deputy Executive Director Åsa Regnér and delegation with young female entrepreneurs and CEOs. Photo: UN Women/Amalachukwu Ibeneme

The DED also had  a chance to interact with other young women in the technology industry who are changing the game and redefining how women envision a future career in the industry. Although the number of women represented in the technology sector in Nigeria is gradually rising, there is still work to do to close the gender gap. UN Women Nigeria Country Representative Comfort Lamptey and UN Women Regional Director for West & Central Africa, Oulimata Sarr emphasized the need to get more women in the industry and UN Women’s role in facilitating the process.

UN Women Deputy Executive Director Åsa Regnér and delegation with young female experts from the technology sector.
UN Women Deputy Executive Director Åsa Regnér and delegation with young female experts from the technology sector. Photo: UN Women/Alpha Ba