The South African Chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has challenged women in the party to exhibit courage and get substantial slots in the incoming National Working Committee (NWC) at the March 26 National Convention.
The Chairman of the Chapter, Mr Bola Babarinde, gave the charge in a statement on Thursday in Lagos.
Babarinde spoke against the background of the recent rejection of all the Bills related to gender issues during the voting on the amendments to the 1999 Constitution by the National Assembly.
“The national convention of the APC, hopefully is coming up on March 26.
“Our women should exhibit courage and the will to be involved in sensitive offices and not subordinates as usual, they have the numbers and enough sympathisers to get them victory.
“The diaspora chapters are saying enough of this apathy against women. We will give our full support to women aspiring for offices within the party structure.
“Enough of this political isolation of women in Nigeria,” Babarinde said.
The diasporean chairman said that the dominance of the male gender in the governance of Nigeria since inception had given women the mindset that their place is in the kitchen.
He added that religion in Nigeria was also a big tool in relegating women to “the kitchen and the other room”.
“We cannot ignore most African cultural beliefs that perceives women as inferior to men.
“Considering all these hindrances, one can see that it’s not going to be an easy ride for women to break into relevance in our polity.
“But thank God, the world has changed and moving towards a new direction and we have to move with it,” Babarinde said.
He said that chapter had earlier made a call for a woman leadership of the party, but to members amazement, the gesture did not even attract support from the Nigerian women folks.
“We believe strongly that there are capable women within the APC who can paddle the ship of the party to greatness, we urge them to come forward.
“It amazes some of us how a group of men can come together to out rightly reject a law that will promote the involvement of women in partisan politics,” he added.
According to him, what is important is for the women folk to design a way of dealing with this injustice.
He said that it seemed women in Nigeria were not aware of their strengths, saying” it’s time they figure out that strength and make the best use of it. The time is now!”
Similarly, Babarinde said that another group that was allegedly segregated from contributing to the development of the country were Nigerians in diaspora.
He, however, decried the rejection of the rights for diaspora voting by the National Assembly.
“Nigeria may not achieve progress if we refuse to tap into the abundant human resources we are endowed with no matter their location within the globe and their gender,” Babarinde said. (NAN)