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Women groups urge FG to deliver on 35% affirmative action

By Tobi Awodipe
18 July 2023   |   3:20 am
As Nigerians await the list of federal ministers, women groups have called on President Bola Tinubu to deliver on his campaign pledge of having, at least, 35 per cent women in his cabinet.

President Bola Ahmed Tinubu

As Nigerians await the list of federal ministers, women groups have called on President Bola Tinubu to deliver on his campaign pledge of having, at least, 35 per cent women in his cabinet.

At a media conference organised by Women Radio 91.7, yesterday, they expressed concern on the President’s commitment to affirmative action, in view of recent appointments, where only 25 per cent women were picked as special assistants and a meagre 15 per cent as personal aides.

Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian Women Trust Fund (NWTF) and Director, Sustainable Gender Action (SGA), Mufuliat Fijabi, noted that other African countries have made considerable progress in women’s representation and called on the new administration to uphold the 35 per cent affirmative action.

Also, National President, International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), Amina Agbaje, echoed the need for gender equity and transparency in the President’s list, urging women groups to send a delegation to First Lady, Oluremi Tinubu, to lobby for a 35 per cent quota for women.

National President, Nigerian Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ), Ladi Bala, stressed that media engagements are necessary to keep the advocacy ongoing, and enable it to garner the attention it deserves.

On her part, Deputy Chief Whip, House of Representatives, Adewunmi Onanuga, expressed confidence that the President would deliver on his promises. The Coordinator, APC Professional Women (North East), Jamila Babuba, was also optimistic that Tinubu would appoint, at least, 35 per cent women in the cabinet.

Peoples Democratic Party member and social justice advocate, Chikas Kumle, highlighted the vital role of women in an inclusive government, urging the President to include an ample number of APC women on the list.

Programmes Officer, Women’s Rights Advancement & Protection Alternative (WRAPA) Nigeria, Zainab Abdulrasheed, highlighted the importance of inclusive advocacy on behalf of marginalised voices towards implementing the affirmative action and achieving Sustainable Development Goals.

A former Deputy Director, National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), Saka Azimazi, called for grassroots advocacy and male support to achieve affirmative action for women at all levels of government, just as Senior Research and Policy Analyst for BudgIT, Enebi Opaluwa, lamented the absence of women in policy-making processes in Nigeria.

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