During the 2023 International Women’s Day Awards Gala in Lagos, Oby Ezekwesili, a former presidential candidate, urged women to form political parties to increase their political influence and promote gender equality in society.
She emphasized that the key barriers to women’s participation and leadership must be removed, which can be social, cultural, economic, financial, or systemic in nature. To join the debate on all the other issues, women must gain political currency, and therefore, women should acknowledge and support other women who are running for offices in the 2023 elections.
Ezekwesili pointed out that political parties are the gatekeepers of women’s participation in politics and determining whether they get on the ballot or not. Therefore, women must learn the strategic power of collaborating with young people in the population to form their own political parties if political parties do not allow women to gain currency within them. She urged women to pay attention to how political parties are formed, how they are run, and how their internal democracy works.
Mrs Angela Emuwa, the Chairman of Punch Nigeria Limited, also spoke in support of Ezekwesili’s call for women to put their electoral weight to use by supporting women who have the capacity and capability to run for office.
She suggested that women should form their own political parties and invited anyone who wants to join to follow the constitution. Women can make changes and promote gender equality by taking action and changing Nigeria.