2023 Election: Clamour for Women’s Inclusion in Governance Heightens As CWSI Calls for Immediate Action

2023 Election: Clamour for Women’s Inclusion in Governance Heightens As CWSI Calls for Immediate Action

  • The continuous outcry for women's participation and inclusion in governance has reached a fever pitch
  • Ahead of the much-anticipated 2023 general elections, women and young girls have been urged to stamp their authority at polls
  • Championing this course, the Center for Women Studies and Intervention (CWSI) said women must annex their opportunity now

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FCT, Abuja - In the build-up to the forthcoming general elections in 2023, there is a growing call for women's participation and inclusion at several tiers of governance.

The Center for Women Studies and Intervention (CWSI) made this powerful call on Thursday, December 15 during its roundtable interfaith sessions with religious leaders, community heads, women leaders, and a host of other stakeholders.

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CWSI, Women inclusion, CWSI
One of the facilitators of the interfaith, Tome Uwubiti leading a session with stakeholders and participants in Abuja on Thursday, December 15. Photo: Segun Adeyemi
Source: Original

Speaking to Legit.ng shortly after the interfaith, the executive director of CWSI, Rev. Sr. Ngozi Frances Uti said the inclusion of women in governance has been insignificant over the years while noting that the 2023 election should serve as a year of opportunity and redemption for women.

She said:

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"For once let us see that the 35 percent affirmative action is respected. We are not asking for equality.
"If we have more women in leadership, in decision making, then their voices will be heard. If you have a house with 20 members and there is no woman, women's voices won't be heard. Especially in a society where people believe that men are superior and women are inferior. We don't want to use those words but that's exactly what's happening and it cuts across; in politics, in the church, and everywhere."

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Also speaking at the event Lola Mamedu the program officer of the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD) and major partner of CWSI said the idea of the interfaith is to get feedback from stakeholders on the interventions that have been made to foster better women’s inclusion and participation ahead of the 2023 polls.

Lola stated that the outcome of these interventions from stakeholders has been positive and outreach to women and young girls has brought about sensitisation on electoral practices, and their rights.

During her interfaith sessions with participants and stakeholders titled; "Electoral amendment on election day voting procedure", Lola sensitised them to some of the innovations that have been induced by the electoral body ahead of the 2023 polls.

Her session also covered issues on electoral violence, gender-based violence, and other vices attributed to the elections.

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Similarly, another CWSI partner, Emeka Obiezu the director of the Augustinian Centre for Advocacy, Justice, and Peace (ACAJP), said the 2023 poll is a great opportunity for women.

He said:

"We have the opportunity and we can't lose the opportunity, so we should go out and get it. There are no barriers that stop us from getting it. It is between us and against ourselves."

Participants at the CWSI interfaith also reeled out their thoughts on the need for women and young girls to be major players in the 2023 general elections.

One of the participants, Augustina Richard told Legit.ng that women need to start supporting the course of participating in governance.

She said:

"I think women should be strong, and they should believe in themselves. That for me, starts it all. And they should move in unism, because when you believe in yourself, it means you know where you're going and what you want. And then you have that sense of direction and purpose."

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The CWSI interfaith is the second of its series on the project; "Action for better female inclusion and participation in the electoral process in Nigeria."

The project is in partnership with the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD) and aimed at promoting a campaign on social media, conducting virtual engagements on various social media platforms, community engagements, use of radio jingles for wider reach on the tenets of the project which is “Women exercising their power and voice by voting and supporting more women in politics”.

It also seeks to promote religious and faith-based influence to drive voter education and increase awareness, participation, and inclusion of young girls and women (Aged 18-35) in electoral. processes in view of the forthcoming elections.

Source: Legit.ng

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