Press Releases

ECOWAS Celebrates International Women’s Day, Calls For Gender Equality

10 Mar, 2020


Abuja, 9th March, 2020. In commemoration of the International Women’s Day (IWD) on 8th March 2020, the Commission of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) held a reception for its Management and staff on 9th March 2020 in Abuja, Nigeria.

Speaking during the celebration of the IWD, the Commissioner of Gender and Social Affairs of the ECOWAS Commission, Dr Fatima Jagne stated that ECOWAS has placed the quest for gender equality and women’s empowerment at the heart of its priorities.
Delivering a keynote address on obstetric fistula, the Commissioner stressed that it is not only undermining the progress that has been made in the area of sexual and reproductive health but also has serious implications for development and the attainment of gender equity and equality in the region.

“The root causes of fistula are gender-based and include factors such as early or forced marriage, poverty, women’s rights abuses, lack of attention to specific reproductive needs of women and gender-based violence” she said.

Speaking on behalf of Honourable Justice Edward Amoaka Asante, the President of the ECOWAS Community Court of Justice, Mrs Franca Offor highlighted the importance of this year’s campaign theme, “Each for Equal”, describing it as very apt since it aims to galvanize individual and collective action undertaken jointly to bring about global gender parity.

Madam Jackie Brou, the wife of the President of the ECOWAS Commission urged women in the region to strengthen their capacities so as to take up opportunities offered by ECOWAS.
“No one will offer you what you do not deserve. But as you stretch yourself to the next level, be rest assured that I will always advocate for gender equality within ECOWAS”, She added.

The celebration also featured a presentation by Dr. Jeremias Dias Furtado, Commissioner for Human Resources of the ECOWAS Commission on the overview of the ECOWAS female staff population and motivation towards Management positions. Several goodwill messages were delivered by Justice Dupe Atoki of the ECOWAS Community Court of Justice, Senator Khariat Gwadabe of ECOWAS Parliament and Kikelomo Raji a guest speaker at the occasion.

Member States