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    Give us deputy governorship slot, Ondo women plead

    Ahead of 2020 governorship poll in Ondo state, women politicians have insisted that it was their turn to produce the next Deputy Governor in the state irrespective of party affiliations.

    They said it had happened one time or the other in the neighbouring Ekiti, Osun and even Lagos state where women performed excellently.

    At a news conference under the aegis of ‘Association of Female Politicians’ in Ondo state, the former commissioner for Women Affairs, Omowumi Ohwovoriole lamented that women had been marginalised in the state unlike other states in the Southwest.

    She maintained that the United Nations( UN) 35 percent affirmative action for women was not observable in the state, stressing that out of 26 Assembly members, there is only one seat for women.

    The former commissioner emphasised that they were not fighting the government, but trying to put their house in order to demand their rights.

    According to her, politicians irrespective of political parties operating under Association of Female Politicians came together in celebration of June 12 Democracy Day and the 20th anniversary of uninterrupted democracy in Nigeria.

    “We conducted a historical scan of the political participation of women in Ondo state and Nigeria at large and observed that over the 20 year period from 1999-2019, Ondo State women have continued to witness abysmal representative percentages across the state.

    ” In elective offices and legislative arm, the highest representation ever attained by women in Ondo state was 11 per cent in 2011 with three women elected to State House of Assembly, as against the recommended 35 percent affirmation, which is operative under the law.

    “This unacceptable low representation further reduced, drastically, to 3.8 per cent with just one female representative presently in the State House of Assembly, and none in the Federal House of Assembly and the Senate.

    ” The same trend is observed in the state allocation of appointments through which persistently few women are allowed the golden opportunity of service to their state and nation relative to the men in spite of the tireless political participation of women in Ondo State”.

    She noted that in Ondo the neighbouring Ekiti State, the male-female ratio in appointment and elective positions is almost 1:1, stressing that the present Ekiti State was originally part of Ondo State.

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    Mrs Ohwovoriole noted that across the world, the global trend reflected a close connection between female participation in governance and national development.

    This according to her, was observable in African countries such as Rwanda and Ethiopia where rapid socio-economic development is witnessed after the deliberate policy implementation on female participation.

    The female politician urged President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration to follow the trend of other African Nations who have entrenched women leadership as a way of governance.

    Besides, the association called on all State Governors across the nation to entrench the Affirmative Action through adequate appointment of women into key political offices in places where there is a shortfall in female elective representation.

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