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My Challenge to African Women Printable Version PRINTABLE VERSION
by shola adu, Nigeria Mar 6, 2005
Human Rights   Opinions


This piece is about women, from a woman to another woman. I am not a woman of many experiences but of great awareness about the status of women in Africa, also of insight into the prospect for change.
So I write this not in partnership with the advocacy for women's recognition by the menfolk but to challenge the few women that will make Africans change perspective on gender inequality. I am not a feminist but I believe in the incomparable potentials of African women and the tremendous change Africa will experience if these unique strengths are tapped.
There has been so much talk on women’s rights in the past few decades and at times I really do wonder what is really going to take women to assume their deserved position in the society.
However, from the lives of outstanding African women who have had exemplary achievement in different field of endeavour, I have found this saying, 'a city on a hill
cannot be hidden'' as a new direction in which African women should be heading this century. It simply means that when we make ourselves indispensable in our different fields, we stand an inevitable chance of making a footprint on the sand of time. I believe this is one of the greatest weapons of fighting gender inequality.
For women who have decided to stay within the confines of their traditional roles, it is time to start putting creativity and intelligence into this age long role. About homemaking, someone once said ''no professional pursuit so uniquely combines menial tasks with the most meaningful opportunities''. We should seek to understand this and be in pursuit of the fulfillment it offers.
For those who seek to extend their sphere of influence beyond their homes to the society at large, with a channeled passion into a defined cause. The likes of Wangari Maathai with a revolutionary spirit.
I would use as example, the proverbial woman of virtue that we often cite as the epitome of a woman. She didn't have to go around canvassing for recognition and consideration, she simply made herself indispensable and was therefore distinguished.
A sure way of taking our place is by seeking to empower ourselves indispensably through acquisition of skills, knowledge and attitude necessary for upward mobility. We should not only celebrate our diversity, we should seek to enhance it through unique and holistic approach to life. It is time for us to make the most of who we are and go beyond societal limits. Learning to make up for what we lack in physical strength and cultural favor in intellect and mental prowess thereby equipping ourselves for variety of roles throughout our lives. For this, I am an advocate.



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