The Minister of Women Affairs, Paulen Tallen, has applauded the Kwara State Governor, AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, for his consistent promotion of Gender Equality and Women Empowerment in the state.
“As an ambassador for women advancement and a worthy HEforSHE Champion, your passion for gender balance and equity in recent appointment of 12 female permanent secretaries cannot be overemphasised,” Tallen said in a commendation letter to the Governor.
She added: “Nigerian women immensely appreciate you for further justifying the confidence reposed in you and your award as a ‘HEforSHE Governor and Social Investment Champion’ at the National Council of Women Affairs held in 2019, Akure, Ondo State.
“I write on behalf of the Management and staff of the Ministry to once again commend and appreciate your Excellency for demonstrating yet another feat on promotion of Gender Equality and Women Empowerment and for making Kwara State a model for other states to emulate. Nigerian women are indeed proud of you and your kind gestures.”
The Women Affairs Minister had in 2019 commended AbdulRazaq over the appointment of more women into his cabinet, describing the Kwara State’s gender-friendly cabinet as “a dream come true in fulfilment of the yearnings and aspirations of Nigerian women overtime.”
The More Women Group, an amalgam of 169 women bodies across the country, had also praised AbdulRazaq for breaking the yoke of poor representation of women and youths in governance.
The United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) had similarly commended the Governor, calling Kwara under him a “role model for other states in Nigeria.”
“This bold and significant decision sets Kwara State apart, as a role model for other states in Nigeria, in upholding regional and globally agreed standards to promote the full and equal participation of women in all political and decision making processes,” UN Women Representative to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Comfort Lamptey, had said in a letter to the Governor.
AbdulRazaq’s appointment of 12 female permanent secretaries is the highest in the history of Kwara State.
The Governor is the first political leader at national or subnational government’s levels in Africa to have set up a cabinet with 56.25 per cent women members.
The closest to it were the Rwandan and Ugandan Governments’ cabinets that each comprise 50 per cent women.