Prof. Bolanle Iranloye of Physiology, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Idi-Araba, has called for more leadership opportunities for women to navigate and play active role in eradicating COVID-19 pandemic in Niheria.
Iranloye made the call at the first webinar series of the Movement of Women in Lagos State Institutions for Good Governance (MOWLAS) Lecture on Thursday in Lagos.
Theme of the lecture was: “Leadership Paradigm Shift and Role of Women in the Realities of COVID-19.”
She said the twin attributes of empathy and resilience make women better leaders, adding that such leadership was what nations and organisations in the world need to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Women have proven to be masters in multi-tasking and highly collaborative; empathy and resilience make them great leaders.
“Before now, it is often said that leadership is only meant for the male gender, but the outstanding performances of women in leadership had created an awakening in us toward a paradigm shift.
“Women in leadership positions are excelling, even in spite of limited opportunities; they will continue to evolve as more women rise through the ranks and break down barriers,” Iranloye said.
She listed some women leaders who excelled and still excelling in various sectors to include:
Late Dr Stella Adadevoh, Prof. Dora Akunyili, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Mrs Ibukun Awosika and Mrs Abike Dabiri-Erewa.
“Women are in best positions to lead their organisations out of the woods when there is crisis or need for an efficient leadership call for a woman,” Iranloye said.
Also, Dr Oluseun Popoola, Head, Department of Science Laboratory Technology and Chief Lecturer, Yaba College of Technology, Lagos,
encouraged women to explore flexible and remote working conditions provided by the COVID-19 to balance career and home-front.
Popoola said that women must avoid falling victims of COVID-19 associated stress and maintain their resiliency.
“To maintain your resiliency, take care of your mental, emotional and physical health and connect with your community or faith based organisations.
“In spite of women huge potential, careers have always been hampered by combining career with family.
“Women are most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic; it aggravate their economic realities, disproportionate effect on their employment opportunities and heightened existing problem of social and economic inequalities,” she said.
Popoola then urged women to embrace personal social support and adopt strategies in the realities of the pandemic.
Also, Dr Medinat Osundiya, a Senior Lecturer, Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, Lagos State University (LASU), Ojo, said that women must play an active role in the new normal life.
“Women have been at the receiving end of COVID-19 pandemic; increase in domestic violence is an example.
“COVID-19 has brought unprecedented disruption in the educational settings, forcing the closure of schools for a long time.
“Reopening of schools will witness rise in school drop outs occasioned by surge in teen pregnancies and early marriages.
“Women must be part of the entity that will combat the rise in school dropouts,” she said.
Osundiya urged women to acquire training and knowledge in the use of digital gadgets to enhance their opportunities of getting and maintaining their jobs.
Edited By: Olagoke Olatoye (NAN)
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