WIMBIZ advocates more women’s inclusion in politics via mentoring, debate, others

Members of the Women in Politics (WIMPOl) have urged women to participate in active politics so as to improve gender equality in Nigeria and be role models for other women as well.

This was made known at the 2022 WIMPOl mock presidential debate and graduation ceremony held last week in Lagos state.

The event, tagged “My 2023 Political Manifesto ” showcased learnings by participants from the WIMPOL mentoring program.

Adeola Azeez, one of the founding trustees of Women in Management, Business and Public Service (WIMBIZ) speaking at the event, said, one of the things that she has noticed in her political journey is that the numbers of women in politics are not as many as the male gender.

“The quality of women who represent and are in the race are unfortunately below par. So, there is a need for women to rise up in value and standard to this cause of transforming the political, economic, and social environment and making a positive impact in our dear country,” Azeez said.

The politician who is also contesting in 2023 to represent her constituency in the House of Representatives further added that there is a need for women to rise up in value and standard to the cause of transforming the political, economic, and social environment and making a positive impact in the country.

“Women can break boundaries and take on so many roles however there is a massive knowledge barrier that limits us to reach our full potential in the political sector.”

Read also: IWD: WIMBIZ urges women to break bias, maximize potentials

Africa’s biggest economy performs poorly when it comes to women’s participation in politics and electoral processes.

According to the 2021 Global Gender Gap index data by the World Economic Forum, the country was ranked 149th position out of 155 countries. The ranking was also three positions lower when compared to its previous ranking of 146th.

Azeez said, “The women in the politics program which we started in 2014 are in response to the poor representation of women participating in politics, particularly from the private sector.”

The graduation ceremony featured speeches from erudite politicians around the theme; “Politics in Nigeria: Lessons and Perspectives”. Activities will include the presidential debate, voting, results collation, announcement of the winner, speeches, and acceptance speech from the winner during the graduation ceremony.

WIMPOL seeks to serve as a platform, to bridge the gender gap in Nigerian politics by training existing and intending female politicians on the required skills, to attain leadership positions.

“Over a thousand people registered to join the mentoring program but only 125 women were selected as they went through orientation of politics, understanding the party structure, grassroots engagement and understanding the electoral process, personal branding, stakeholder engagement, and the journey into politics,” Hansatu Adegbite, the executive director at WIMBIZ said.

At the end of the debate, Folasade Coker, one of its contestants emerged as the winner of the debate. Kehinde Arimoro and Agatha Henry-Ajala were the first runner-up and the second runner up respectively.

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