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Women Cannot Afford to Fail Africa – First Lady

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The First Lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and President, African

First Ladies Peace Mission, Dame (Dr.) Patience Faka Jonathan, has advised

women to support their spouses to promote peace in Africa.

The First Lady gave this charge today when she received the First Lady of

the Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, Mrs. Roman Tesfaye Abneh, who paid a

courtesy call on her in the State House Abuja.
Dame Jonathan lamented that valuable lives are lost annually to armed

conflicts in Africa. She said that this adversely affects the human

resources needed for development across the continent. She therefore

appealed that promoting peace efforts, must be taken with upmost

seriousness if the region is to reverse the scourge of armed conflicts and

also stem insurgent activities.
The First Lady pointed out that one of the underlying factors that

precipitate conflict is the failure of individuals and groups to manage

and resolve differences amicably. She advised women to always promote

dialogue as a means of settling disputes, cautioning that, women cannot

afford to fail, as they must ensure that the African continent is free

from violence.
She therefore called on African First Ladies to continue to intensify

peace initiatives in their regions, under the auspices of the

organization of the African First Ladies Peace Mission.

She said, “It is high time for us as African First Ladies to take this

peace initiative very seriously because what affects one nation affects

the other. If we fail, we have failed our region, continent and the

Dame Jonathan also used the occasion to commend the First Lady of Ethiopia

on her women empowerment initiatives, as well as her efforts on HIV/AIDS

and cancer prevention, across communities in Ethiopia.

Speaking earlier, Mrs. Roman Abneh, observed that there was a lot to learn

from Nigeria on women mobilization and empowerment. She described Dame

Jonathan as a “role model,” especially in these two areas. Mrs. Abneh,

also lauded Dame Jonathan's contributions to the Organization of African

First Ladies Against HIV/AIDS (OAFLA) and most especially, for her

programmes promoting peace  across the region. While highlighting her own

programmes on the prevention of cancer and HIV, promotion of good

nutrition and primary education, the Ethiopian First Lady said she was

willing to explore areas of collaboration with Dame Jonathan in these