Former Minister of Education, Dr. Oby Ezekwesili, has claimed that men should be held responsible for woes of Nigeria and Africa at large. While blaming African male political leaders for the problem, the former World Bank Vice President, however, absolved women of any blame.
She noted that women only had a "marginal" role to play in the poor governance that has bedeviled the continent.
Ezekwesili made these remarks as a keynote speaker at the maiden edition of the HID Awolowo Foundation annual lecture in Lagos on Tuesday.
The ex-Minister pointed out that research had shown that in Africa, only five per cent of women are chief executive officers; 22 per cent of women are cabinet members; 25 per cent are parliamentarians; and only 29 per cent are managers; and a mere 36 per cent get promotion.
Her lecture was entitled, "Ethical, politics, peace, development and security in Nigeria: The critical importance of women's leadership."
She said, "For as long as the women are held down, the trend analysis does not show any reversal of outcome. Nobody does any favour to Nigerian women by involving them in governance.
"Women are incredible human resource that we must put to use, and what this says to us is that we need to be more intentional and deliberate.
"Research shows that when many more women are at decision – making level, there is less corruption and a wise society would know that empowering its women is smart economics.
"The only way to honour the memory of Yeye Oodua is to take it to that next level; disrupt this model, which is no longer sustainable."