Nigerian women open up on the biases they face in their everyday lives

Tuesday, March 8, 2022, was international women’s day, and for this year, it was themed - ‘break the bias’.

Nigerian women have special ways of letting you know they like you

To commemorate this event, individuals, corporate, and public bodies around the world, unanimously opened debates on how the Nigerian society has played unfairly to women, especially as it relates to inclinations in favour of the other gender.

Amongst those that recounted events that played bias on them was Esther Adekeye, the Managing Partner of Estol Africa, a public relations and management company, who revealed that someone had once admired her approach to work “in the most disgusting manner.”

Adekeye, in a chat with this writer, stated: “In the industry where I function, women are not as many as men for some reasons I don’t understand. There are times we work till as late as 12:00am due to events we handle for clients. And there was this time I hosted a listening party for Olamide’s album, and someone called me to admire how I work, only for this person to say I work like a man.”

While I appreciated his admiration for what I do, I was confused on if it is offensive. These things should be avoided because why can’t that person see me working hard as a woman should. Are only men entitled to working hard?” She queried.

Also sharing her experience, Ajah Victoria, an entrepreneur, said she’s been subjected to all kinds of ridicule all in the name of seeking an apartment to rent.

Victoria revealed that most landlords she has so far approached didn’t want to rent their apartments to her because she’s a single woman.

Her words: “I would recall my most-recent experience just when I thought the storm was over. After searching endlessly for a house and a landlord or landlady that would be willing to rent his or her property to me, I found this apartment in Ibadan. And after inspecting it, I told the agent that took me there that I’m interested in securing it. We agreed on the payments and every other thing. But surprisingly, the agent later called me to ask if I was married, and when I said ‘no’, he told me that the landlord was insisting on only renting the apartment to a married lady.

“The funny thing is that this same landlord doesn’t mind renting the apartment to a single man, but for a single lady, it’s an abomination.”

Vera Okorochukwu, the founder of Marvin Okorochukwu Foundation, lamented how women are often misunderstood, saying being vocal has made her a subject of discussion to critics that think she’s rude.

I’m a very vocal person, and when I speak up to talk in some gatherings, a lot of people take offense to it because I’m a woman. They believe that someone of my calibre should not have a voice even though I am qualified to speak as an authority. In my opinion, I don’t think men are generally responsible for this, it’s a societal abnormality. You would be surprised to know that some women would do anything possible to disallow a female leader. So, I think generally we need reorientation,” she added.

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