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2019: Group raises concern over alleged marginalisation of northern women

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A political group, the Northern Women in Politics, has raised concern over alleged unfair treatment and marginalisation of their political interests, arising from the just concluded primaries of various political parties in the country.

President of the group, Saadatu Abdullahi, stated this at a press conference in Abuja on Tuesday, where some female politicians and aspirants cutting across political parties registered their grievances.

She added that several women of northern extraction who showed interests in the 2019 general elections were shortchanged and intimidated out of the race by their male counterparts.

She said that “A huge number of our members have been seriously traumatised, brutalised and chased away thereby denied access to the venue of their party primaries.

“There are some who even won their party primaries but were later replaced by their male counterparts just because they are not related to the corridor of powers.’’

Abdullahi who said Nigerian women constitute more than half of the voting bloc during elections, also called for more appointive and elective positions for northern women in politics.

“ We are underrepresented in both elective and appointive positions. The deliberate attempt to absent women from political life and leadership positions, if not checked will undermine democracy and women’s economic empowerment especially in the northern Nigeria.

“Presently out of 21, only five elected female federal legislators in Nigeria are northerners, one senator and four members of House of Representatives.

“It is imperative for political parties to re-examine their constitutions and stick to the values and policies for which they were registered to practise.

“They should ensure that this is reflected in their operations especially on the principle of women’s representation at all levels of political leadership.

“We are calling on every state in the northern Nigeria to give women chance to particularly participate in political parties, legislative bodies, public service and decision making,’’ she said.

Also, a female candidate for the House of Representatives on the platform of Social Democratic Party (SDP) Mrs Safrat Dunguns, from Adamawa narrated her ordeal and eventual emergence as candidate of the party.

She called on the gender desk of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to wake up to its responsibility in addressing unfair treatments against northern women during and after elections. (NAN)

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