WOLDI Calls for Empowerment of Widows to address social stigma
Women Law and Development Initiative, WOLDI, a non-governmental organization is calling for the empowerment of widows and their children to address social stigma that create exclusion, and discriminatory or harmful practices.
In press release signed by Hauwa E. Shekarau, Founder/Executive Director, WOLDI to mark the International Day of Widows’ Day, stated the need to empower widows to support themselves and their families by addressing social stigmas that create exclusion, and discriminatory or harmful practices.
The statement said “government must take steps to ensure that widows rights and needs are enshrined in International and domestic laws in line with the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
“Government Policies and Programs directed at eradicating violence against Widows and their children, poverty alleviation, education, free access to justice and other supports, must be undertaken within the context of action plans to accelerate achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals”.
The statement noted that the corona pandemic and the attendant lock downs and economic closures that has afflicted the world today has wroth untold hardship on widows noting that most of whom have no access to pensions, family support, healthcare or even basic necessities to support themselves and their children.
According to the WOLDI’s release, there is, currently around the world, an estimated 258 million widows and this number is on the increase in light of the current corona virus pandemic ravaging our planet and occasioning devastating human loss, likely to render a lot of women new widows.
It will be recalled that the 23rd day of June every year has been set aside by the United Nations, by virtue of Resolution A/RES/65/189, as “International Widows Day” to draw attention to the voices and experiences of widows and to galvanise the unique support that they need.