The Nation

Rep: Nigeria needs a president committed to 35% affirmative action for women

Samuel Akpan

Nkeiruka Onyejeocha, deputy chief whip of the house of representatives, says the country needs a president who is committed to 35 percent affirmative action for women.

In March, a bill seeking affirmative action to ensure that 35 percent of women are involved in all governance processes was rejected by the national assembly during the voting on constitutional amendment bills.

Speaking with reporters in Abuja, on Wednesday, Onyejeocha said Nigeria could take a cue from countries that have made political parties create room for women in governance.

“The solution to the whole issue of low women participation in politics is that Nigeria needs a president who is committed to affirmative action for women,” the legislator said.


“A president who will order political parties to include a certain percentage of women for elections. This is not rocket science. Cameroon, Rwanda and Kenya did it. In 2021, the proportion of seats held by women in the national parliament of Rwanda stood at 61.25 percent.

“In fact, in the recent election in Kenya, seven women were elected governors.

“What the women did was to extract commitment from one of the presidential candidates, Williams Ruto, who publicly signed an agreement to allocate a specific number of parliament seats to women.”


The principal officer said issues of women participation in politics and climate change must always be on the front burner.

“We discussed contemporary issues that pose existential threat to humanity like climate change, women participation in politics, flooding, terrorism in sub-Saharan Africa,” she said.

“At the end of our deliberation, the Nigerian delegation would lay its reports on the floor of the national assembly for deliberations and follow-up actions.

“I can summarily say, ACP-EU is a platform for the betterment of our countries.”

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