By Demola Akinyemi
Worried by the dismal performance of women politicians in Kwara State in the last general elections, women-inclined NGOs have begun an aggressive campaign for them in order to take front stage in the forthcoming 2023 elections in the state.
Reliable data available to Vanguard shows that 65 per cent of the votes in Kwara State in the last general elections were cast by women and still no woman was elected into any office out of the existing 35 elective posts in the state across the political parties.
An NGO, Community Need Care Development Initiative (CONCED) sponsored by Canada Global Affairs has, therefore, begun the sensitisation programme for selected women in three local governments in the state; Ilorin South, Ilorin West and Ilorin West from where it will go round other local governments.
Likewise is another partnering, NGO Global All For Women And Children Foundation.
The Chief Executive Officer of CONCED, Mrs Magret Tinuke Erinle, speaking with Vanguard at the venue of the programme in Ilorin on Friday said leaders of each of the existing political parties in the state were contacted, and they selected their very active women to be part of the sensitisation programme, tagged “Women Voice on Leadership.”
She said, “I don’t care about any political party you come from, but my interest is that women must talk, women must lead, women must be in the position of authority.
“I monitor elections in the last general elections and I discovered that out of 35 elective positions in Kwara State, there was no single woman elected. So, that really inspired me to start working on this. The reason for this is that the three selected local governments are the most powerful.
“If women are in the position of authority, they should be able to pursue their issues very well more than the men would do for them. From there it would go round.
“For instance, we are pushing for a law on women in the state assembly, but no single woman to bring the bill up. I have four years to work on this project and get the desired result, so the earlier I start the better.
“We will do the needful, interact with the stakeholders, and engage the media to achieve our aim. At the end of it all, by 2023 elections women in Kwara must be inspired enough to be elected into public office then, unlike in 2019”
Similarly, the Chief Executive Officer of Global All For Women And Children Foundation, Christy Abayomi Oluwole in an interview with Vanguard expressed concern that the way politics is being practised in Nigeria, it doesn’t encourage women participation.