2022 NBAWF CONFERENCE: OVERVIEW BY CHAIRPERSON PLANNING COMMITTEE ADETOLA BUCKNOR-TAIWO

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Let me welcome you to a very happy and exciting morning which heralds the beginning of the 2022 edition of the Annual Conference of the Nigerian Bar Association Women’s Forum in commemoration of the International Women’s Day 2022.

This year’s Conference with the theme; “The Invisible Hand of Gender Bias: Championing Collective Change” is
not just timely but timeless particularly in such a season where our society has mastered the art of downplaying the gaping gulf in wages, inequities, economic and political exclusion, unequal pay, stereotypes to almost a nonexistent conversation, the fact remains that these concerns are not unfounded and remain a real threat to the enormous potential we wield as women.

Reflecting on this year’s theme, when I look around me, I see women who are heroines in their own rights, trailblazers
and torchbearers who are taking over the sectors and whose modest wins are potent testimonies of the enormous power we possess, and our capacity to be ready role-models to the girlchild whose dreams, hopes and aspirations
were almost stillborn but for this revival.

Through amazons like us, she believes she can stand through the fury of a patriarchal society with her crown unbroken and her shoulders unbent.

During the last year’s conference, we focused our deliberations on blind spots on the pathway of inclusion and in response, the society readjusted for a while and tried to blur the lines of the bias to an almost invisible point.

However, the dangers in attempting to blur the lines are more detrimental than beneficial and the bias against women would intermittently raise its ugly head like it did in the past weeks where the National Assembly totally disregarded bills that sought to empower and encourage women participation in governance.

From the foregoing, it is evident that we can no longer condone blurry lines but will lead the charge for a society where there are no lines and where equity and equality are enthroned.

As critical stakeholders, we are duty bound to educate the public on these concerns, mobilize political will and collectively champion a refined narrative to ensure that the stereotypes against women are completely shattered and this conference offers us a unique opportunity to drive this change.

As we look on excitedly to the quality of engagements and the classes of personalities this year’s conference
will attract, my thanks are due to the executive and advisory committee of this forum ably led by our delectable chairperson, Professor Oluyemisi A. Bamgbose SAN for the great role this forum has played in changing the narratives in favour of women. We have been fortunate to be blessed with high quality leadership and we have shown how excellence can thrive with the right leadership regardless of gender.

Finally, I want to thank my hard working and votive planning committee members
for their commitment and labour of love in ensuring that the lofty standards of the NBA women’s forum is maintained through this flagship conference and
also our event sponsors and collaborators whose support have in no small measure seen to the execution of our ideas for this conference.

Thank you exceedingly and to everyone who made it to this event, we are grateful you made it and I welcome you once again while wishing you an impactful conference.

Adetola Bucknor-Taiwo
Chairperson Conference Planing Committee

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