(Opinion): Political Inclusion and participation of women in Nigeria; Kwara state in perspective – Aisha Sulaiman

Get more connected to the real facts

By Aisha Sulaiman

“Women’s political participation is a fundamental pre-requisite for actualising gender equality and result oriented democracy.”

In Nigeria, the extant National Gender Policy (NGP) in a bid to remedy the gross gender imbalance in leadership across Nigeria recommended 35 percent affirmative action by all States seeking for more inclusive representation of women in both elective, political and appointive public service positions respectively.

Kwara state is one of the foremost States that were created in Nigeria, upon the the return of democracy to the country in 1999, there has been growing concerns over low representation of women in both elective and appointive positions in the State and many parts of the country. The under-representation of women constitutes a serious democratic deficit, which undermines the legitimacy of the contemporary democratic ideal which is meant to give all citizens devoid of their creed or sex equal opportunities to thrive.

After the 2019 General Elections which brought His Excellency, Mallam Abdulrahman Abdulrasaq onboard as the Executive Governor of Kwara State. There was a paradigm shift in the narrative where women did not have a place where decisions on how to run Kwara were made. There has been measurable positive change in the strategic inclusion of Women in Government.

In a bid to promote gender equality within Kwara state and create a platform for women’s effective participation in politics, Gov. Abdulrahman’s first set of appointees in 2019 had 9 Women emerge as members of the State Executive Council (SEC) out of 16 commissioners appointed. This is a feat that had never been recorded in Kwara or any State in the whole of Nigeria and it set a precedence for sustained inclusion of women in all sectors of Kwara’s Administrative framework.

Women have not only been appointed, they have been given key positions in the government to oversee, particular emphasis would be made in reference to the Ministries of Finance, Education, Youth development and Environment which have been headed by female Commissioners under Gov. Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq.

These act of empowering and enabling Women has accounted for different levels of growth & development across Kwara State as women are delivering effectively in the roles assigned to them. The chances of more women getting involved in government has also been boosted and ahead of the 2023 general elections, more women are vying for Political offices to contribute their quota to Kwara State’s development.

Gender equity has been a major achievement that has been recorded in the Mallam Abdulrahman Abdulrasaq administration and he has been duly recognized by local and international organisations for his resolve to lead the revolution that would make women take their rightful place in the leadership of Nigeria. His Excellency has not just implemented the recommendations of the National Gender policy (NGP) and United Nations, in Kwara State today, he has surpassed them been the only Governor in Nigeria with over 50% percent of women holding various political offices and in the civil service.

His Excellency Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrasaq has proven to the people of Kwara state that he is committed to taking the State to enviable heights. He has proven that through the aggressive implementation of his gender balance model and a plethora of other achievements that have put Kwara State on the map.

Aisha Sulaiman is a Woman Advocate, She is the serving President, National Association of Kwara State Students, (NAKSS) UniAbuja Chapter and a Final Year Law Student.

Please Post Your Comments & Reviews

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *