SENATOR-elect for Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Ireti Kingibe, has promised to improve representation of women in governance.
Speaking to journalists in Abuja after receiving her Certificate of Return from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), she described the representation of Nigerian women in governance as “abysmally bad” and a “shame on the whole country”.
Kingibe who defeated 20 years serving lawmaker, Philip Aduda, of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the February 25 National Assembly election, observed that the political system in Nigeria frustrate women who desire to be involved in governance.
“A lot of women run for political offices but we get pushed out in so many levels. I won the election free and fair, yet a lot of efforts were put in place to put back the person the people rejected.
“As a nation we need to re-examine ourselves. What we are doing and where we are going because it is not about who you shove today but where we all end up as a nation in a few years” said Kingibe who won the election on the ticket of the Labour Party (LP).
Responding to how she would address the marginalisation of women in politics, Kingibe said she will mobilise women to occupy important positions at the LP’s congresses.
“If there are more women in the party, then it goes without saying that getting those councilors and chairmen will be much more easier than when it is only men. So that is where I am going to start.”
She added: “When the FCT Area Council elections come, I intend to get at least 25 women councilors out of 62 and that is the minimum I will settle for.
“I also look forward to getting more chairmen that are female. That is where we have to start. From the bottom. We have to grow more women.”
INEC issued Certificate of Return to Kingibe on March 7 after she polled 202,175 votes to defeat Aduda.
She is one of the three women who received the Certificate of Return out of the 98 senators-elect so far announced for the 10th Assembly by INEC.
Supplementary elections are yet to hold in certain areas of the country which will usher in 11 more senators into the Red Chamber.