Nigeria has few restrictions to women advancement – World Bank

By 10:03 Wed, 09 Sep 2015 Comments

The World Bank has classified Nigeria along with Kenya and Ethiopia as countries in Sub-Saharan Africa where there are still some few legal and regulatory restrictions to the advancement of women in employment and entrepreneurship.

In a report titled ‘Women, Business and the Law 2016’ released in Washington on Wednesday, the World Bank said there were two countries in Sub-Sahara without any restriction at all even though the region hosts the countries with the most restrictions to women advancement.

A statement issued by the bank on the report said Sub-Saharan Africa hosts almost a third of the world’s 30 most restrictive economies and two of 18 economies where there are no legal barriers to women’s advancement in entrepreneurship and employment.

The statement said, “The region continues to make progress towards gender equality, with 16 economies making 18 reforms in the past two years. Sub-Saharan Africa was the greatest reformer amongst all regions of the world, in terms of number of economies undertaking reforms, says the biennial report, which examines legal and regulatory barriers to women’s ability to get a job and start a business.

“The latest edition covers 173 economies across the globe, including 41 in Sub-Saharan Africa, adding Equatorial Guinea; São Tomé and Príncipe; Seychelles; South Sudan; and Swaziland from the region.

“The report finds that 18 economies in the world, including Namibia and South Africa, have no legal barriers to women in the areas monitored. Nigeria, Kenya and Ethiopia are also amongst the region’s economies with very few barriers in the areas monitored by the report.”

It added, “The economies with the greatest barriers are Sudan, one of 10 most restrictive economies in the world, Mauritania, Democratic Republic of Congo, Cameroon, Guinea, Benin, Swaziland, and Senegal.

“In Sudan, women are prohibited from certain jobs, including night work, and there are no legal provisions mandating equal remuneration for work of equal value for men and women or non-discrimination in hiring. Sudanese laws also impose a number of additional restrictions on married women, who are required to obey their husbands, cannot choose where to live or be head of household.”

The report found that 28 of the 41 Sub-Saharan African economies covered by the report continue to maintain restrictions that do not allow women to work in the same jobs as men.

Property rights also remain an impediment to wealth accumulation for women; of the seven economies in the world that give sole right to the husband to administer joint marital property, six are in Sub-Saharan Africa, the report added.



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