Ajaokuta Council Election: The Choice of Hon. Prince Mustapha Aliyu Aka’aba as the Chairman and Hon. Salamatu Magdalen Salami as Vice Chairman: Culture of Gender Equilibrium

My people of Ajaokuta must understand the fact that, with realization of one’s own potential and self-confidence in one’s ability, one can build a better world because our life is what our thoughts make it, so whether you think you can, or you think you can’t–you’re right.

There is no gain saying that politics is the catalyst for development, and a society can only ignore this truism at its peril. Politics therefore, can be said to be the act of making public choice and making decision on behalf of people through the medium of the State and its apparatus.

It is accepted that for the development of any kind to be successful, women, who make up the larger proportion of the population should not be left out because there is no doubt that both men and women have some potentials that must be carried along.

We must not underestimate or pay deaf ears to the fact that, the meaningful participation of women in national, local, and community leadership roles has become an important focus on global development policy.
Still, some may ask why it matters if women become political leaders, elected policymakers, or civil society activists.

Why does the world need more women involved in all aspects of the political process?
Women’s political participation results in tangible gains for democracy, including greater responsiveness to citizen needs, increased cooperation across party and ethnic lines, and a more sustainable future.

There is abundant historical evidence that African women have for long been playing crucial role in political life of their Countries. So many great women in the past have helped in shaping the future of their respective Countries.
There are well documented accounts of Women’s role in Pre-Colonial Nigeria that shows that quite a number of proactive women’s groups and organizations existed.

There are accounts of women ruler-ship of various kingdoms in Nigeria, some of who exercised absolute authority. For instance, there was Queen Amina of Zaria who in the 15th century, extended her influence to as far as Nupe land in the present Niger State. There was also a woman named Ebele Ejauna who was said to have founded the Igala territory in the present day Kogi State.

To be sure, Nigeria Women are making inroad into politics inspite of the barriers militating against their doing so and Ajaokuta must not be left out for any reason in making this dream of gender equality in political participation a reality.

However, this progress is nowhere near commensurate with their superior population over their male folk, hence a clear need for the involvement of more women in politics.
The more females in office, the more likely it is that policies will reflect women’s interests. This can be traced back to their records in the past 50 years where women have accomplished much in the political arena; having influenced decision making and the harnessing of resources.

Despite these enormous, gigantic and laudable strides of achievements, many female agenda-setters do not believe that those accomplishments are enough.
It is pertinent to recognize that women politicians cannot be lumped into generic category. There is wide diversity in their level of involvement in politics, the strategies and tactics they use to influence political decisions, and the measures of success they have in achieving their objectives. The factors that hamper or facilitate females’ political participation vary with culture, region, economic development, and political system.
Women are not a unified block, divided in terms of class, race, ethnicity and country of origin.

In fact, i will say it’s even too late to start recognizing women in the politics of Ajaokuta now, although it is better to be late than never because right from time, more often than not, men constitute a larger percentage of the party membership and this tends to affect women when it comes to selecting or electing flag bearers.

Since men are usually the majority in the political party setup, they tend to dominate the party hierarchy and therefore at advantage in influencing the party’s internal politics.
There’s no doubt that, the prospects of Nigerian women in politics are bright at both the National and International levels, there is a growing academic interest in the level of participation of women in politics.

The ‘third wave’ of globalization emphasizes the issue of democratization, women and human rights, which dominate world interests in Africa.
African women in Nigeria, especially Kogi State, Ajaokuta LG in particular, are exploited and marginalized despite the fact that women constitute about 49% of the total population, they are discriminated against in the political process. The Marginalization of Nigerian women is more pronounced in democratization processes, therefore, the choice of Hon. Salamat Magdalen Salami as the running mate of Hon. Prince Mustapha Aliyu Aka’aba, both famous grassroots politicians and youths mobilizer in the area, should be seen as divine and timely, hence all and sundry in the area to support this ideal political step of the APC stakeholders.

This political emancipation in the area will no doubt further encourage our women to fully participate in politics and contest.
I say kudos to the brain behind this unique combination of Hon. Prince Mustapha Aliyu Aka’aba and Hon. Salamat Magdalen Salami as the Chairman and Vice Chairman of Ajaokuta LG respectively Inshallah’Allah.

Whoever initiated this idea of involving women in elective positions in Ajaokuta political settings need to be celebrated for this is a unique and most credible idea that should be embraced by all… We are all humans that have come into being for the sake of each other, so either teach them, or learn to bear them.


Written by: Idris Itopa Idris, Co-Publisher, Arewa Trust Newspaper, Abuja.

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