Bukky Bello Jaiyesimi : Women should be actively involved in nation building

A strong advocate for women’s role in development and nation building, Bukky Bello Jaiyesimi believes that there is need for more women to be involved in business, trade, governance and other sectors of the African economy.


Bukky Bello Jaiyesimi is the founder of Women in Nation Building (WINB), a pan-African organisation that advocates the active input of women in nation building. The multiple award recipient who studied Cultural Diversity Awareness in Scotland also encourages mentoring of the younger generation.  She speaks on her passion for the role of women in development.
You are a strong advocate of inclusion of women in nation building. Why are you so passionate about women in public life?
In my lifetime, I want to see women scale new heights. You see, women are dynamic in nature, are able to multi-task and are innovative. With the energy and dynamism that women have been endowed with, their role in nation building cannot be undermined but to be amplified and supported by all.
What are some of the achievements and potentials for the annual Women in Africa Conference organised by WINB?
Good governance has been on the rise in the nations of Africa, as the continent now witnesses women taking on roles as president of nations, corporate and business leaders, where jobs and opportunities are created. There are a lot of untapped opportunities for the reinvention of social emancipation in Africa as decision makers could work closely with non-governmental organisations in the nation building process. There is need for more women to be involved in business, trade, governance and other sectors of the African economy. In addition, women organisations can also be catalysts for development in Africa.
What inspired you to form this organisation?
African Women Foundation for Nation Building, though founded by women, is for women, men, youth and children in Africa. Women need to take their place in world economy and by doing so the lives of children and the role of men and young people can be further enhanced. We want to rejuvenate, reposition and reinvigorate the role of the African woman in the nation building process across sectors of the economy.
African culture does not encourage women taking leadership positions and there are arguments in some quarters that women do not have what it takes to build a nation. What are your thoughts on this concerning women development?
It is not a competition. It is an agreement to work hand in hand together. It is not that women want to take the place of men. What we are saying is that there are lots of opportunities that women can take advantage of to contribute to nation building. It is not about who is there first or who is there second.  Reality should be faced to get things moving to develop the continent of Africa for the future of Africa and that future is now. This is the time for women to arise and build the nations of Africa. Well, it is not a question of whether they have the capability because women have been involved in nation building from inception. When you talk of the family unit, women take care of their homes. So, women have been there all these while. But, in taking up real responsibilities, women are capable. We have some Nigerian women in top positions in the World Bank. We have had and are still having women as managing directors of banks in Nigeria. The Africa Women Foundation for Nation Building does not encourage competition. It is about building together.


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