Stakeholders Seek More Space For Ekiti Women In Politics;Governance 


Stakeholders in Ekiti state ecosystem have resolved that there is need for more collaboration and supports for women to participate in politics and be in positions of authority in the state.

This was the resolutions during a town hall meeting on women’s political participation organised by Kimpact Development Initiative (KDI) with support from UN-Women.

The meeting was aimed at stimulating discussions on identifying strategies and multisectoral action plans to promote women’s political participation towards the 2023 elections and beyond.

Participants at the meeting were drawn from several sectors including the Ministry of Women Affairs, National Orientation Agency, and other relevant MDAs, Traditional Rulers/ Religious Leaders, Academia, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC- Ekiti State), Women in Politics Forum, Representatives of Political Parties in the State, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), Youth Leaders, students, Persons with Disabilities National Council for Women Societies, the Media and other women groups.

Speaking, the team lead of KDI, Bukola Idowu noted that the constitution of the country did not place any barrier against women, adding that they constitute an important aspect of the society that should be supported for development.

Idowu stated that the town hall meeting became necessary to collate ideas and adopt an action plan for the political ecosystem in the state, advising women to involve in political activities towards bridging the gap in leadership.

The KDI team lead while applauding the gender inclusiveness in Ekiti state with the deputy governor and the Secretary to the state government being women, assuring  stakeholders that the group would sustain its sensitization drives in a bid to ensure more active women participation in the ecosystem.

The Ekiti State Chairperson,  Radio, Television, Theatre and Arts Workers’ Union of Nigeria (RATTAWU) Mrs Adebola Agbaje in her contribution urged women folks to always put forward their best for both appointive and elective positions .

She argued that women should not pander to unnecessary sentiments by encouraging those without handle positions.

In her submission, the Ekiti State Director,National Orientation Agency(NOA) , Mrs Olawumi Famuyiwa,urged women to always show real love to one another and stop being antagonistic.

She expressed optimism that women  would record more success in politics if they embrace and support  themselves since they have voting power even more than  Men .

The State  Public Relations Officer of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) Tolu Afolabi who lamented the violence which has charactised political activities in the country promised that the corps would continue to place high priority on the security of women during elections.

Afolabi said, ” The political parties are to be blamed for must of the violence we are witnessing during elections in our country but the security of women is paramount to us as an agency and we will continue to place priority on their activities.

” But I must say that women must start to support themselves in politics for them to be relevant and equally take their place in the state’s political ecosystem.”

Representative of the PWDs, Funso Olajide lamented non-participation of women in the political space, adding, ” women most times are scare to participate fully in politics because of fear of violence and you know it will be difficult for our members to escape in that difficult situation.”

The meeting recommended that Political parties’ promotion of women’s political participation is crucial to the political empowerment of women. Parties need to undertake a series of measures across the electoral cycle in order to make sure that women are fully integrated in the party structure. The organization and financing of the party also needs to be more favorable for women’s participation.

The stigmatization and attacks on women in politics poses a draw back to the progress made in increasing women’s political participation in the State. It makes the political ecosystem in the State unsafe for women.

There is currently a lack of synergy between women across political parties, market women leaders and other relevant groups on supporting one another to promote women’s political participation. Women in the State have not been able to leverage on their numerical strength to increase women’s political leadership in the State.

The outrageous cost of campaign financing and running elections is a barrier to women’s political participation. It was evident in the unrestricted use of huge sums of money to influence political stakeholders during the conduct of the primary elections. This not only systematically excludes women from political party participation but also casts a shadow on Nigeria’s democracy as credible candidates without huge sums of money to pare will also be excluded.

The socio-cultural status of women proved to be a major obstacle. Therefore, it is important to continue to promote gender equality.

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