As the Infotech scene continues to expand, about 600 million adolescent girls are expected to join the global work force in the next decade.
Making this known in Lagos, Mrs Ufuoma Emuophedaro, the Chief Executive Officer, E-Business Life Communication Ltd., said that more than 90 per cent of those living in developing countries would work in the informal sector in jobs that were not regulated or protected and jobs where abuse and exploitation were common.
Emuophedaro also said that concerted efforts needed to be made to debunk the statistics that less than 30 per cent of female graduates were involved in Information and Communications Technology.
“Negative gender stereotypes related to girl’s education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics begin as early as primary school and have devastating effect of making them doubt their own potential.
“From the age of six, most girls already considered boys more likely to show intelligence and suited to smart activities than their own gender,’’ she said.
Emuophedaro said that the aim of the day was to promote girls empowerment and fulfilment of their human rights, while also highlighting the challenges that female all over the world face.
She said that some of the issues faced by the girls across the world include: no access to education, gender bias, early marriage and subject to acts of sexual violence.
“The day of the girl-child recognises the empowerment and investment in girls, which are critical for economic growth, eradication of poverty as well as the meaningful participation of girls in decisions that affect them,’’ she said.
Emuophedaro said that while gender bias and offences against the females had not stopped, there was still a lot being done to help generate awareness against the violation of women’s right.
Quoting the United Nations, she said that even though the demand for educated and skilled workers existed in the world, there were still a quarter of young people mostly females, who were currently unemployed or uneducated.
Emuophedaro said that there was need to equip girls with transferable and life-long skills such as critical thinking, creativity and digital awareness.
She noted that having role models in the sciences and other fields where the presence of women was sparse was critical.