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Afe Babalola advocates 40% women representation in governance

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The founder of Afe Babalola University Ado-Ekiti (ABUAD) Aare Afe Babalola,SAN has advocated the need for the country to give more space for women to be elected in the positions of authorities to enhance growth and development of the nation.

The renowned lawyer who eulogized the contributions of women to the progress of any society, called on the stakeholders to initiate the promises of amending the constitution for mandatory 40 percent representation for women in state and National Assembly seats, higher than the Beijing declaration of 35 percent affirmation.

Babalola spoke in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital on Thursday during an event organized by the Law Students’ Society (LSS) of ABUAD to mark this year’s international women’s day in memory of the late mother of the founder, Chief Abigail Babalola.

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Wife of the state governor, Dr Olayemi Oyebanji delivered a lecture with the topic, ‘Inspiring inclusion: Men and Women as Partners in Progress ‘ at the event.

The elder statesman maintained that nature did not create women to be at the back seat in the society, urging them to support one another and be ready to participate in the political activities in the country.

He argued that when given enough space and opportunities, the women folks have proven to be committed and dedicated to duty in achieving desired results in their respective careers.

According to him, “You know as much as I do that at all levels, Local, State and Federal, only men are voted in. Thus far, all the Presidents in Nigeria have been men while all the Governors too have been men.

“We have a few instances where women are Deputy Governors. Is it a sin to be a woman? Did God create them to be dominated by men? Certainly not.

“My suggestion is that women should acknowledge that nature does not make them inferior to men. Both have the right to rule this country. After all , women are not as susceptible to corruption as men.

“Women respect the law more than men. Put in positions of power, they are more committed and more committed and dependable. If you want an example, go to my university.

“I dare say that if women were at the helm of affairs in this country, we would have gotten another Goldam Myer or Margaret Thatcher, Angela Merkell (Former Chancellor of Germany) or Ellen Sirleaf of Liberia in Nigeria.

“I suggest that the constitution be amended to ensure 40% representation of women in the State Assembly, National Assembly and in Government. With that, Nigeria will witness progress in their partnership.”

Babalola who described the governor’s wife as , “ a first lady properly called” added that her lecture was well and precisely delivered in proffering solutions to bridging the gap of gender inequality in the country.

In her lecture, Dr Oyebanji explained that the leaders in the country must create platforms for women to display their qualities, saying that,” at this stage, women should not be struggling for 35 percent representation in governance.”

She said, “It becomes highly imperative to integrate inclusion into our daily practices in the modern-day society. Every member of the society including both men and women should endeavour to champion inclusive language and be very mindful of derogatory language to avoid stereotypes or generalizations when referring to women folk.

“In order to achieve accelerated growth in national development, men and women should always come together as partners in progress and cultivate a culture of inclusion through advocacy for equitable policies that could enhance the positive contribution of every individual towards the attainment of national goals and objectives.


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