In Auditorium 3, Lagos State Polytechnic, Isolo on March 30, 2023, the programme anchored by Institute for Media Services (IMS) on behalf of European Union (EU), Agents for Citizen-Driven Transformation (ACT) and British Council, was brought to a close with ‘One Day-Roundtable Meeting with Community Leaders and the Media on Gender-Equity & Inclusion for Local Development’.
Speaking during the roundtable meeting, which was facilitated by a renowned media executive, Lekan Sote, one of the women’s empowerment advocates, Mrs. Biodun Oroja urged all women to be more actively involved in politics.
She emphasized that era of women chickening out from active participation in politics is now over.
Assessing the programme: “Promoting Empowerment of Women and Vulnerable Groups for Participation and Inclusion in Social and Economic Development in Peri-urban Areas of Lagos State” from a broader perspective, a participant admitted that, so far so good the right steps have been taken in the right direction but there is still more grounds to be covered.
Another contributor stated that time has come for women to sit straight now that the votes count.
People with Disability (PWD) also lent their voices. They complained that politicians only give them attention during electioneering campaign but often neglected them after winning the elections.
During the second phase of the discussion, the role media in the propagation of the project was considered.
The facilitator advised the Community Leaders to be more friendly with the media representatives and ensure that they are carried along in all community development programmes.
He suggested that Press Releases should also be made available to the media to enhance adequate coverage for metro projects.
As token of appreciation, Community Leaders were also reminded of the need to appreciate media men or organizations that have positively contributed to the growth and development of their communities, by giving them awards for recognition. He believes this will motivate them to be more actively involved.
As fallout from the recently concluded elections, the participants noted that the media performed creditably well but more assistance is still expected from them.
Mr. Afolabi Kayode observed that media representatives did not carry tags during the election which may be due to security reasons. While advising that adequate security should be provided for the media representatives, he however commended INEC for the provisions made for the comfort of People with Disability (PWD).
Officials of the IMS expressed gratitude to everyone for actively participating throughout the programme.