Capacity Building Workshop: Minister,APC National Women leader, seek support for female aspirants

Minister of Women Affairs, Dame Pauline Tallen and the National Women Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr Betta Edu, has called on party leaders, governors and other stakeholders to rally around all female aspirants in their different states and ensure they emerge candidates of the party in their different positions.

This was disclosed at the APC zonal and state women leaders strategy planning and capacity Building workshop held in Abuja.

At the workshop, Dr Edu announced that as part of her programmes for Nigerian women, she would embark on low cost housing scheme for less privileged women in the party, empowerment for women from polling unit to national.

According to Edu, the party’s decision to give out free forms to female aspirants and many other considerations should serve as incentives and motivations to the aspirants, noting that sales of forms begins on Tuesday .

Her words: ” I am.particullarly happy to have my fellow women here and other party leaders across board. This workshop is meant to prepare our Zonal and state women Leaders  to be ready for the elections as the primary election is here.

“Am also using this opportunity to call on our Governors  and other key stakeholders in their various states to ensure that all female aspirants win the tickets to represent the party at the polls.

” We are willing to partner and ensure that women occupied a good number of elective and appointive  positions in line with the 35 percent affirmative action.

” I have also begun plans to initiate the door to door mobilization for INEC Registration, financial empowerment, a low cost housing scheme for the less privileged women amongst us.”

On her part, the Minister of Women Affairs, Dame Pauline Tallen, said that women are ready this time to work with one another under the leadership of the brand new Women Leader, promising that women would be Empowered going forward. She called on women to rise to the occasion asking state and zonal women leaders to unite with one voice to project female candidates while working for them to be successful. She encouraged women to shun violence and love one another. Furthermore she called on men to support women rather than beat or kill them.

Director of Organisation, All Progressives Congress (APC) in an interactive session with the Zonal and State Women Leaders of the APC, spoke on the Guideline and Processes of the Party Primaries and fielded questions on the forthcoming primaries.

The women further resolved to work together to increase female participation, across board, at the National and State Assemblies by ensuring that women have two (2) out of five (5) delegates (Adhoc) in every ward and one out of the three in the LGA.

Another resolution adopted was to demand for effective women representations in employment, in National and State, appointments and board levels.

The immediate past women leader , Hon Stella Okotete was also at the event.


You can’t conduct primaries without membership register, INEC to parties

The Independent National Electoral Commission INEC has warned political parties wishing to conduct their primaries within its timelines to prepare and submit their membership registers to the Commission or risk running foul of the law.

INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu gave the charge Friday in Abuja at the second regular consultative meeting with Resident Electoral Commissioners RECs.

According to him, only one out of Nigeria’s 18 registered political parties have fulfilled that important aspect of the law.

“Let me also seize this opportunity to remind political parties that by the provision of Sec. 77 of the Electoral Act 2022, each party is required to maintain a membership register in hard and soft copy and to make such register available to the Commission not later than 30 days before the date fixed for primaries, congresses and conventions.

“So far, only one political party has complied. It is a mandatory requirement of the law and all parties are required to comply. Doing otherwise is like going into an election without the register of voters. There can be no credible primary or general election without a credible register of voters”, he said at the meeting.

Giving an update on the number of parties that have notified it of their dates for primary election, Yakubu said 14 political parties have now notified the commission.

“As you are all aware, the Commission released the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the 2023 General Election a day after the Electoral Act 2022 was signed into law. The next activity under the Timetable is the conduct of party primaries by political parties. So far, 14 parties have submitted their notices and schedule of primaries to the Commission.

“As required by law, the Commission shall monitor the primaries in the constituencies where the parties intend to field candidates. This means that the State offices will be heavily involved in the exercise. I urge you to exercise our monitoring responsibility with absolute neutrality. There are sanctions for violation of the law and you should know this and warn our staff accordingly”, he stated.

The INEC boss also added that inspite of the security challenges, stakeholders must remain resolute in the determination to conduct the 2023 General Election as scheduled.

He said; “In doing so, every eligible Nigerian must be given the opportunity to vote, including citizens in Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camp. Happily, the Commission has a standing policy on IDP voting which has been periodically reviewed. In the light of the security challenges around the country and guided by the provisions of the Electoral Act 2022, the Commission will immediately review the policy to ensure that no internally displaced Nigerian in any part of the country is disenfranchised. The issue of IDPs is one of the issues to be discussed at this meeting.

“The Commission is confident that our security agencies have the capacity to deal with the security challenges ahead 2023 General Election. Fortunately, we have started the preparations for the election early. There is therefore ample time to deal with the current situation to enable the Commission and all stakeholders to deploy nationwide for the election. We will continue to work with the security agencies for a peaceful electioneering and conduct of elections. To this end, the Commission will hold high-level meetings with the security agencies and consultations with stakeholders immediately after the forthcoming national holidays”.

(Vanguard News)

2023: Why academics, professionals must participate in campaigns – Osinbajo

Ahead of the 2023 presidential elections, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has called on academics and members of other professional bodies to participate actively in the task of making Nigeria a better place for all.

Osinbajo stated this when he received a team of 13 professors from the six geo-political zones under the aegis of the Progressive Intellectuals Advisory Group (PIAG) at the State House in Abuja who came to endorse his presidential ambition.

“These days, you find all sorts of pretenders claiming expertise in everything under the sun without any real expertise. So, it is important that academics do not vacate that space to allow all sorts of people to begin to postulate on practically every issue,” he said.

“One of the most important things I recall when I served first as Attorney General of Lagos State was that it is so important for those of us who are in academics to participate because not only are we among the more knowledgeable groups, we have also done more work.

“The path that you (the group) have chosen is a very crucial one because in the future, more intellectual groups will take the responsibility that is really theirs. And I think that for those of us who are from the academic community, it is a privilege that we have, being the intellectual crème de la crème of our society, and this comes with responsibility,” he said.

He appreciated the group’s endorsement of his presidential ambition, saying: “If there is any sort of endorsement that has given me particular joy, it is this one; because if one is endorsed by professional colleagues, people who live their lives by critical analysis and evaluation; it is worth celebrating.

“These matters are not to be taken lightly. For a professor to say that he supports a political cause, it is a weighty matter indeed, because you are aware that a lot of reflections go into it.

“But when you have 13 professors all over the country, saying they are aligned to one cause, I am greatly humbled. It is one of those things that doesn’t happen often.”

While expressing appreciation, the Vice President expressed hope that the academics would “work together to make a significant difference for our country.”

In his remarks, the leader of the group and Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences at the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN), Professor Shehu Adamu, said the visit was to intimate the Vice President on activities of the group to support his ambition to become Nigeria’s President.

Also speaking, the Vice Chancellor of Al-Kalam University in Katsina, Professor Nasiru Musa Yauri, said: “We have decided we will not fold our arms; we will do whatever it takes to actualise the PYO 2023 project.”

Also speaking, the Head of Political Science Department at the Nnamdi Azikiwe University in Awka, Anambra state, Professor Chukwuemeka Jaja Nwanegbo, said, “the academic community would not  sit back and watch the political terrain disallow you from emerging. So, we want to work with you, other professionals and students to actualise your bid.”

Other academics at the meeting include Prof. Yahya T. Baba, Usman Danfodiyo University in Sokoto; Prof. Mashood Omotosho, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife; Associate Prof. Philips Okolo, Director of the Institute of Peace and Security Studies, Niger Delta University; Prof. Shola Omotola, Federal University Oye Ekiti; Prof. Sheikh Danjuma Abubakar, IBB University, Lapai; Associate Prof. Abdullahi Jibrin, Federal University Lafia; Associate Prof. Atelhe George, University of Calabar; Prof. Saleh Mohammed, Federal University Kashere, Gombe State; Prof. Haruna Lawal Modibbo Adama, University of Yola; and Prof. Ike-Elechi Ogba, Ebonyi State University.