From Okey Sampson Umuahia
The Chancellor of Gregory University, Uturu (GUU), Abia State, Prof Gregory Ibe has bemoan the failure of members of the national assembly to pass bill 35, which sought to provide special seats for women in the National Assembly and State Houses of Assembly.
Ibe, who is a governorship aspirant of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2023 election equally condemned the federal lawmakers for not passing bill 37, which was targeted at ensuring affirmative action for women in political party administration.
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Prof Ibe in a statement by Sleek Ogwo, coordinator, Prof Gregory Ibe Media Associates (ProGIMA) said it was unfortunate that with the action of NASS, Nigeria missed the opportunity of integrating the female folk into the mainstream of country’s politics through legislation.
“While commending members of both floors of the National Assembly for their due diligence in amending some contentious sections of the constitution, I however see their inability to overwhelmingly vote in favor of bills 35 and 37 respectively as a regrettable missed opportunity that will seriously hurt our politics in future.
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“In fact, by this action, the nation missed a great opportunity of handing our daughters, sisters, wives and mothers an early International Women’s Day gift and setting a new agenda with brand new roles for female participation in the forthcoming 2023 general elections”.
He therefore appealed to the members of the 36 Houses of the states Assembly to correct the anomaly by voting in support of all gender bills that encourage women affirmative action.
“While I enjoin Nigerian women not to lose hope, I want to urge honorable members of State Houses of Assembly across the country, to as a matter of urgent national importance, rise to the occasion by vetoing the apparent gender-insensitive resolutions of the national assembly when the exercise gets to the floor of their chambers as required by law.
“On our part, we shall continue to work with civil society organizations and other development partners to increase advocacy while mobilizing massively to ensure the enactment of women friendly laws, especially in Abia state”.