…As Ini Edo, coalition of NGOs Make Case for Women, Youths Participation in Politics

The All Progressives Congress (APC) Governorship Candidate in Ekiti State, Mr Biodun Abayomi Oyebanji (BAO), has joined international organizations and peace ambassadors to advocate for peaceful election come June 18.

Speaking while playing host to the leadership of various Non-Governmental Organizations, including Women Development Initiative (NIGAWD) and non-Violence Against Women in Politics (VAWIP) and the representative of National Democratic Institute, in Ado Ekiti, Oyebanji called on stakeholders in the state to make sure the coming election is conducted without any rancour.

He said, “I’m so excited today to identify with this noble campaign which centres around peaceful election, non-violence against women in politics and empowerment of Nigerian youths. Again, I’m using this opportunity to call on political leaders and their followers to ensure peaceful election come June 18 because no election is worth the blood of any Ekiti man or woman.

“We are one and we should embrace peace because no society grows in the midst of crisis. I’m also committed to further boosting women participation in politics and will ensure, if elected governor, that more women are appointed into government because women are known to be more effective in administration.

“On youths development, which incidentally is one of the major areas I focus in my manifesto, I will not only give priority to youth development but will also separate the Ministry of Youths Development from Sports for effectiveness,”

Earlier, popular Nollywood actress, Ini Edo, had called on APC and Oyebanji to guide against all forms of discrimination and violence against women in politics.

Ini Edo, who is the NDI National Ambassador on Women Empowerment Programs and leading promoter of non-Violence Against Women in Politics (VAWIP) expressed worries that most women had been discouraged from vying for elective offices as a result of gender-based violence.

She identified gender-based violence such as bullying, coercion, unhealthy notions against women, violence during elections, as some of the factors that discouraged women in politics.

The Chief Executive Officer of Women Development Initiative (NIGAWD), Mrs Abimbola Aladejare-Salako, said women deserve to be given preferences and protected against societal ills.

Aladejare-Salako said the NGO was also partnering with the Southwest geo-political zone in the campaigns for the 2022 Ekiti and Osun governorship races and the 2023 general elections.

The Coalition of NGOs also urged political parties to organise peaceful electioneering campaigns before, during, and after the 2022 Ekiti off-cycle governorship election and the 2023 general elections.

Raheem Akingbolu
Media Assistant

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