Tinubu Needs to do More for Women – CSOs

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By Blessing Agbeetan

Stakeholders and civil society organisations have called on President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to do more for women.

The call was made at a media dialogue organised by Women Radio 91.7 FM on Saturday 6 April 2024 in commemoration of the two years landmark judgement on 35% affirmative action.

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Amina Agbaje, the National President of FIDA, lamented that the Tinubu-led administration appointed less women as ministers, adding that if women were considered good enough to vote and campaign during elections, they should be considered good enough to be appointed into various political positions.

Agbaje added that there is a need to sustain and continue the demand for more women’s representation. Rasheedat Medupin of Sustainable Gender Action Initiative (SGAI) stated that the government needs to partner with civil society organisations to intensify efforts to implement the 35% affirmative action and also make Nigeria a nation where women’s voices are heard.

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Medupin, who appealed to the Tinubu-led government to uphold the judgement of 6 April 2022 by appointing more women into positions, added that Nigeria needs to accept women as accomplished leaders and ensure that gender policies are implemented.

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According to Barrister Marshal Abubakar of Falana & Falana Chambers, the government must be reminded to obey the rule of law of judgement of 6 April 2022.

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Abubakar urged Nigerian women to go back to court to get the judgement enforced should the Tinubu administration fail to uphold the judgement, while also calling for the need to engage with stakeholders at the national assembly to canvass for constitutional amendment to allow women occupy more seats. Ngozi Nwosu-Juba of Vision Spring Initiatives emphasised the need to involve more women at grassroots and return back to court to get the judgement enforced.

Nwosu-Juba recommended that the ongoing constitutional review should be taken advantage of to revisit the 5 gender bills to make up for the lack of women in governance. Zainab Yahaya Tanko of Nigerian Women Trust Fund stated that women have the numbers and must be adequately represented, while also calling for the need to intensify efforts until the judgement is implemented.

The consensus of the media dialogue is that the government must implement in full its own National Gender Policy that has been further made mandatory through the 6 April 2022 landmark judgement in favour of Nigerian women.

In 2020, a group of Nigerian civil society organisations led by Nigerian Women Trust Fund took the government of Nigeria to court seeking an injunction to compel the government to implement the 35 percent affirmative action as contained in the National Gender Policy which was adopted by the government in 2006.

On 6 April 2022, the case was won by Nigerian women with pro bono support from Falana and Falana Chambers.

Blessing Agbeetan is Award Winning Broadcaster @wfm917.

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