Nigeria: Stakeholders Kick Against Tokenisation of Women in Workplace

8 April 2021

Stakeholders in the Nigerian economic space have kicked against tokenisation of women in the workplace, noting the flood of female appointments in some global organisations.

They expressed their dissatisfaction at a webinar to honour International Women's Day with the theme: Leave No Woman Behind: The 50% Rule, held in Lagos.

Speaking at the meeting, Managing Director, Everdon Bureau de Change, Theresa Ezeh said: "Tokenism is when a female is just appointed to a role not necessarily because she is the best fit but because they are trying to make up the number of representation as a team.

"I don't think that it is a good opportunity to accept because already, there is a bias about this role that has just been filled by a woman because we want it filled by a woman."

On her part, Head, Marketing and Corporate Communications & CSR, Oando PLC, Alero Balogun said time will tell if the recent flurry of female appointments in some global organisations is an evidence of a better understanding of the merit of gender equality in the corporate sector or tokenism.

Nkiru Olumide-Ojo recommended that organisations must, among other things, be deliberate on creating roles for women to ensure that women are evenly represented as men.

She said: "First the number don't lie and when I see the numbers, and when I say this I think it is Mackenzie who brought up research that showed that companies which had females on their board had output of 60 per cent returns on capital invested and I think, probably up to 85 per cent returns on equity and may be 25 per cent returns on sale.

"On what companies must do to close their wide gender representation gap, I think they must be deliberate with creating roles for women on the table."

In his opening remarks, Executive Director, Institutional Business and Investor Relations, VFD Group, Niyi Adenubi said: In my role as Executive Director and my personal life, I have learnt that competence has no gender."

Vanguard News Nigeria

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