A former Presidential Candidate and a Chieftain of the ruling All Progressive Congress, APC, Mr. Gbenga Olawepo-Hashim has commended the initiative of Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq in signing into law, the Gender Equity Bill in Kwara State.
In a statement, titled: A Vote for Gender Equity; released by his media office in Abuja on Wednesday, Olawepo-Hashim described the governor’s passion for gender equity as second to none and urges other governors to emulate the noble initiative, which makes it mandatory for both genders to be included in political appointments at all levels within a 35:65% ratio.”
He noted that the law, cited as Political Offices (Gender Composition) Bill 2021, is arguably the first legislation of its kind in the country that places a ceiling below which the government cannot go in appointment of either gender for public offices.
According to him, “what the Governor was doing with the Kwara State Assembly on the Gender Bill, showed that the appointment of a majority women cabinet by the Governor was not a fluke but a deliberate policy of inclusiveness.”
As a long-time ally of the governor, he maintained that “he share Governor Abdulrazaq’s passion for gender equity, having worked with great women leaders in the past such as Hajiya Laila Dogonyaro , Amina Muhamed of Bank of the North, Esther Audu, Salome Jankada,Justina Eze, Mrs Apezan, Barrister Olivia Agbajoh, etc, during the sitting of the Women and Youth Subcommittee of the Presidential policy Advisory Committee in 1999.”
The Global Energy Executive, added that the law remains a bold and worthy initiative by the governor because “when our daughters, wives and sisters are given equal opportunities, the nation matches forward at full speed and with full capacity for all-round development.”
He averred that women remain a critical factor in human civilisation. “They are the largest voting demographic in Nigeria. Yet, they are often absent or unfairly represented when policies and programmes that shape everything concerning them and their families are designed,” he said.
While saluting the heroic role women have played in Nigeria’s history, Olawepo-Hashim maintained that the new law will “definitely open a new chapter for inclusive political system in Kwara State and Nigeria as a whole. It is our bold contribution to the Nigerian political culture.”