2023: Don’t Use Free Forms To Sideline Women Aisha Buhari Tells APC

2023: Don’t Use Free Forms To Sideline Women Aisha Buhari Tells APC, The First Lady, Mrs Aisha Buhari, has appealed to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) not to allow women within the party to be robbed of their political aspirations just because they are given free nomination forms.

The First Lady made the appeal on Saturday during the Female APC Aspirants’ Summit, organised by the Office of the Women Leader of the ruling party with support from the International Republican Institute (IRI), at the State House Conference Center, Abuja.

Her warning came amid speculation that women aspirants are being pressured to step down for their male counterparts in some of the positions being contested in the 2023 elections.

The wife of the President said she doesn’t believe in free gift but expressed confidence that the party will not relegate women to the background.

She stated: “I stand before you today as a mother, as a leader, as a sister, believing that today’s summit will make a difference in our lives as women and mothers of the nation.

2023: Don’t Use Free Forms To Sideline Women Aisha Buhari Tells APC

“To the chairman of our party, governors and party executives, I commend your efforts in supporting women over the years. However, I would like to draw your attention that it is now time to believe in women more and show more solidarity with them.

“Distinguished guests, it is important to mention the efforts made by our great party towards promoting women’s participation in politics. I appreciate and commend the recent party’s gesture in offering free nomination forms to female aspirants. Honourable Emma Eneukwu representing the chairman of our great party, I don’t want the party to use the free forms as a means of sidelining women at the end of the day.”

She added: “I don’t believe in free gifts. But with Dr Beta there as our leader, I believe the APC will not relegate  women to the backseat.”

According to Mrs Buhari, giving out free forms has created more opportunities for women to contest for elective positions. It, however, does not assure aspirants of success in the forthcoming elections.

“I believe that a huge task lies ahead of us. We must solidify our unity of purpose and work hard toward creating an impactful space within the political arena.
“Your decision to contest gives a lot of inspiration to women and I would like to reaffirm my support to all the women contestants.”

The First Lady pointed out that countries that successfully tackled the COVID-19 pandemic are led by women, affirming that the world belongs to women.

The Wife of the Vice President, Dolapo Osinbajo, on her part, expressed confidence that the women are coming and won’t be stopped from getting a space at the table.

She said: “There’s a question I’ve been asking and I’m still waiting for someone to give me a satisfactory answer. When you go to the hospital to have a child, whether the child is a boy or girl, we pay the same hospital fees. Is there anybody here that has paid higher school fees for boys and for girls? Is there anybody that paid a bus fare, airplane tickets, train fair? Did you pay more or less because you’re a woman or a man? Do we pay the same thing? Get ready, get ready, because it’s time for us to take our seats at the table.
And as the representative of the national chairman said, we must follow through. You must go all the way to victory. Because when you sit at the table, you’re there to fight to ensure that it is well with the girls or the women. You’re there to fight for your mothers, your grandmothers, your daughters, your sisters, your aunties, and your nieces, you’re also there to fight for your fathers and your sons and your brothers.

You’re there to fight to make sure that the women are given their place at the table. You’re there to fight to ensure that we no longer see gender-based violence, you’re there to fight to make sure the girls get into school, you’re there to fight to make sure when it’s time for jobs because you are there we will be given jobs, you’re there to fight to make sure when decisions are being made concerning women. Women have the inputs.“

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