By Angela Nkwocha
Nigerian women have decried underrepresentation in the media industry stressing that women only appear in a quarter of television, radio, and print news and has thus described the act as a deliberate perpetuation of harmful gender stereotypes.
Speaking at a workshop which centres on Intergenerational Dialogue for Media Professionals, which focuses on “Depenning Media Ownership of inclusion and diversity”
to mark this year’s International Women’s Day (IWD), renowned gender activist and women’s rights advocate, Ms. Ene Ede, founder of Equity Advocates cum publisher of “The Woman Today Newspaper” while tasking women to be media owners, called on for a redress to gender imbalance in the creative and media industry.
She harped on the need to change the attitudes which foster inequalities, and embrace the organizational culture that supports the place of women.
Ede called on women to be strong and take responsibility for personal development rather than wait for organizations. She further stressed on the need to push and aspire to be great media professionals as well as deploy effective mentoring systems, efficient networking, improved recruitment procedures, management and skills regular monitoring, and performance assessments as it relates to women in their media organizations.
One her part Ms. Debrah Ogazuma one of the few women producers in the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) in the mid-80s who produced 52 episodes of a notable programme, ‘Magana Jari Ce’
which gained prominence as it was transmitted on the NTA Network nationwide tasked women to think out of the box and be daring in their approach to life.
She revealed that the larger audience did not realise that it was being directed by a woman because of its complexities, even within the drama genre, as people just assumed that it was being directed by a man. She called on women to venture into areas they are knowledgeable in if they must make impact stressing that children’s programmes should be directed by experts who have received formal training in that regard.
The Founder and Chief Executive Officer of International Society of Media in public health (ISMPH), and a veteran broadcaster Moji Makonjuola, called on women to develop themselves and to keep pushing. While narrating her experience to stardom she maintained that she had always gotten herself prepared to take up any opportunity. She called for hardwork professionalism, willingness to take correction, punctuality and originality as the keys to limelight.
For Bar, Joseph Igbinedion, he harped on the need for education stressing that it pays and paves way for life accomplishments, adding that it is a catalyst for growth.