Women and Socio – Economic Development: The Nigerian Question


Ifeyinwa Arum , Marcus Adeleye Babatola ,

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Volume 8 - September 2019 (09)


United Nations declared 1985 – 1995 the decade for women and organised women conferences that have put women issues on the front burner. Since then, increasing attention has been given to women issues not only in Nigeria but the world over. These conferences have as their goals gender equality, development and peace. Several conferences have also been held in Nigeria to strategize on how to integrate women into development processes. Notable among them is the Women’s Mastermind Conference, Women for Women Conference, Dabira Women Conference etc.
Yet, not much has changed regarding the plight of Nigerian women. These efforts have largely been limited by women’s unequal and subservient positions in the family and the society at large. Another reason is the culture of the Nigerian state which is discriminatory to the women folk and has permeated every fabric of the society. The non-remuneration of house chores which women perform at home is partly the reason for the feminization of poverty not only in Nigeria but the world over. Women perform a lot of work at home that is burdensome and time wasting, and at the same time unrecognized, unacknowledged and unremunerated. They invest so much time on house chores and domestic duties, leaving little time to be invested in activities that could yield money. Indeed, Carthorne (2008) aptly summarized the reasons for feminized poverty as follows:


·         Women are often relegated into low paying occupation or the occupation they predominate are usually lowly paid
·         Women are usually left to bear more burden in raising children especially if the women are widowed, separated or divorced
·         Women spend more time in attending to house chores and in taking care of the aged and the children (care giving) than men
·         Women’s work and educational pursuit  are usually affected by pregnancy unlike the menfolk

It is against this background, that this study attempts to interrogate the socio – economic situation of the Nigerian women. The study also examines the roles of the Nigerian government to integrate women into development processes. Data was derived through primary and secondary means of data collection. The primary data was derived through objective and unbiased direct observation of the activities of Nigerian women. Secondary data was gotten through textbooks, newspapers, official bulletins, magazines and internet services.


gender, women empowerment, development, domestic violence


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