How we were threatened, harassed, intimidated during 2019 elections - Female candidates

How we were threatened, harassed, intimidated during 2019 elections - Female candidates

- Some female candidates who participated in the 2019 elections have narrated how they were threatened, harassed and subjected them to other inhumane acts during the exercise

- One such candidate, Mrs Mulikat Akande Adeola, said she saw violence, militarization, voter-inducement and lots more during the exercise

- Another candidate, Mrs Christina Ude, said she was threatened days to the election

- Also narrating her experience, Mrs Phina Kanu said during the elections, she and her supporters had to run for their lives from their violent opponents

On the heels of the just-concluded 2019 general elections, some female candidates have described how fellow politicians threatened, harassed and subjected them to other inhumane acts during the exercise.

They made the disclosure in Abuja at a meeting organized by the Nigerian Women Trust Fund (NWTF), a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) aimed at improving women participation in politics and governance.

According to Daily Trust, the meeting was tagged “Strategy Meeting on Experiment Sharing of Female Candidates in the 2019 General Elections”, and took pace over the weekend.

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Legit.ng gathers that a former leader of the House of Representatives and senatorial candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the Oyo Central senatorial district, Mrs Mulikat Akande Adeola, said women believed in doing what was right.

Akande said she went through her party’s primary elections successfully and was prepared.

She said: “During the general elections, people were ready to do anything. We saw violence, militarization, voter-inducement and lots more.

"I was the preferred candidate and my constituents were still in shock that I was not declared winner.”

In the same vein, Mrs Christina Ude, who contested for the House of Representatives to represent Orlu/Oru East/ Orsu federal constituency of Imo state, said she was threatened days to the election.

She said: “Somebody called me and threatened to bring thugs to make sure my votes do not count if I do not bring a certain amount of money.

“The fellow eventually carried out the threat as my agents were threatened and in some cases, they were chased away.”

She said people should not complain of poor leadership if they took money at the polls or were induced with other material wealth; asserting that the electorate got got the leaders they deserved.

Also speaking, Mrs Phina Kanu of the All Progressives Congress (APC) who contested for a seat in the Abia State House of Assembly, said she was physically intimidated during the poll.

She described her experience at the polls as being horrible, to the extent that she and her supporters had to run for their lives from their violent opponents. According to her, it was not easy to show interest in politics as a woman.

She said: “As women and mothers, we will not want to do things our children will not be proud of. I would urge women to venture into politics on time from secondary school level through the university.”

The NWTF’s chief executive officer, Mrs Mufilat Fijabi, said the meeting was convened to beam the spotlight on the experiences women had in the general elections; specifically those of candidates.

She said the forum aimed to improve Nigeria’s democratic performance as regards participation of women in politics.

She noted that since 2007, women representation in elective offices had continued to decline; adding that Nigeria had gone lower in the ranking of nations with women representation, going by the results of the 2019 elections. She said the situation had to be salvaged.

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Recall that Legit.ng previously reported that the Edo state House of Assembly’s only female candidate who sought to represent Oredo West Constituency, Miss Charity Idahosa, said she was sexually harassed by men over her ambition.

Idahosa, contesting under the platform of Mass Action Joint Alliance (MAJA), made the allegation in a chat with newsmen in Benin.

She described the experience as frustrating, and a recurring negative trend against women in politics.

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Source: Legit

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