The Coalition For Women Participation In Governance and Leadership in Nigerian has threatened to take legal action to halt the inauguration of the 10th National Assembly if women are not considered for presiding officer positions in the Federal House of Representatives and all State Assemblies.
The mega body, comprising of 200 women’s groups, is also demanding a review of five gender bills which were rejected by the 9th assembly.
The Secretary of the mega coalition, Atinuke Olaolu, issued a statement on Tuesday in Abuja, expressing the group’s frustration with the lack of progress in promoting gender equality in Nigerian politics.
According to her, women constitute over 50% of the population in Nigeria, yet they continue to be marginalized and excluded from political leadership positions.
“We hereby demand that a woman must be considered for as presiding officer in the Federal house of representatives and all state assemblies.
“They must consider women who are ranking in order to emerge as presiding officers and chair of significant committees,” Olaolu said.
She explained that the coalition has been calling for a more inclusive political system that reflects the diversity of the Nigerian population, but lamented that in a time the country is expected to advance the composition of its political leadership, women were rather been schemed out.
“We have no option than to seek redress in a competent court of jurisdiction and obtain an injunction that would stop the inauguration of the 10th National Assembly in the interest of equity and justice,” the statement read.
Olaolu further said that the coalition was tired of empty promises and that it was time for action.
She, therefore, charged the president-elect, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, to give women equal opportunities to participate in his government and leadership of Nigeria.
demanded for the review of five gender bills which were rejected by the 9th assembly.
“We are also calling out the president-elect to put practice his promise to include women’s participation at least 35% as demanded by the Revised Gender policy.
“He must also remember that this is a true test of the commitment to remove Nigeria from the red list and the hall of shame for countries who have no duty to ending all forms of violence against women,” the statement added.
The coalition’s threat to go to court for an injunction to halt the inauguration of the 10th National Assembly underscores the urgent need for Nigeria to address gender inequality in politics.
Women have long been underrepresented in Nigerian politics, with just 6.7% of seats in the National Assembly held by women.
As the country prepares for the inauguration of the 10th National Assembly, all eyes are on the leadership to see whether they will take action to address the coalition’s demands.
The stakes are high, and the coalition is standing firm in its commitment to fight for gender equality in Nigerian politics.