IWD: EU Urges Nigerian Political Parties to Boost Women’s Participation in Politics

The European Union delegation to Nigeria has called on political parties in the country to implement robust measures to increase women’s participation and representation in politics. Highlighting the importance of women’s involvement in decision-making processes, the EU emphasized that it is crucial for achieving equality, sustainable development, peace, and democracy.

During the Women in Parliament Summit in Abuja, organized by the European Union Support to Democratic Governance in Nigeria, European Union Ambassador to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Samuela Isopi, underscored the urgent need for political parties to review and reform their founding and policy documents to align with national and international norms on gender equality.

Ambassador Isopi emphasized that the ongoing constitution reform process presents an opportunity to adopt an inclusive legal framework that promotes equal participation for all Nigerians, regardless of gender, ethnicity, age, or disability status.

Addressing the historical underrepresentation of women in political leadership, Ambassador Isopi urged political parties to set a minimum threshold of 30 percent representation for women in decision-making bodies such as the National Executive Councils and directorates for elections. She highlighted the EU’s commitment to supporting women’s political participation through various initiatives and technical support programs.

In their remarks, Nigerian lawmakers and advocacy groups echoed the call for increased women’s representation in politics. They emphasized the need for constitutional amendments and legislative reforms to address the underrepresentation of women in parliament. Cynthia Mbamalu, Director of Programmes at Yiaga Africa, emphasized the urgent need for governmental action to ensure adequate representation of women in political leadership roles.

The statistics presented during the summit painted a stark picture of the current state of women’s representation in Nigerian politics, highlighting the disparity between women’s population and their representation in parliament. The EU delegation and Nigerian stakeholders stressed the importance of accelerating efforts to ensure gender parity in political participation to address the overlooked issues regarding women’s rights in policymaking.


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