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Kwara/Kogi female candidates hail WARDC, others over mentoring workshops



Kwara/Kogi female candidates hail WARDC, others over mentoring workshops
Participants at the just concluded two-day mentoring and coaching for women candidates in Kwara and Kogi states have commended the organizer of the event, Women Advocates Research and Documentation Center (WARDC), supported by UN Women and the Government of Canada, for the opportunity availed to them.

At the event which was held at Sinclair Hotel, GRA, Ilorin, the female party stalwart also lauded the Women Radio 91.7 for the media engagement stressing that the training will go a long way in promoting and projecting their images ahead of the forthcoming 2023 general elections.

The workshop, according to them will further enhance the capacity and capability of the female candidates to display their readiness wrestle power from their male counterparts in free, fair and credible election atmosphere.

Earlier in her remarks, the Director of WARDC, Dr. Abiola Akiyode-Afolabi, said: “The programme become necessary, looking at the number of women currently in political positions in Nigeria, we intend to build and strengthen their capacity to ensure there is a network between them as well as to build their. So that we can have more women leadership positions.”

“You are also to improve your social capital, to be known as a person of integrity, be pro-less privileged people, be relevant in your local community as well as in your religions organisations.”

In her presentation, Mrs. Anike-Ade Funke Treasure, highlighted strategies on media engagement as a politician.

She stressed that “as a politician you have control of how you wanted to be perceived. You need to work on your positive perception. You need to know that you are different from you as a politician. Being a politician is your higher self.”

She however taught participants how to create and use powerful messages, press statements and other media tools at their disposal, adding that efficient communication with media will create a platform to leverage their political career.

Speaking with journalists shortly after the event, a Hon. Yetunde Ibrahim, Isin Constituency, House of Assembly
Labour Party, disclosed that, “personally, I enjoyed the fact that we are all brought together. We can work together as one in order to achieve common goal which is for we, female candidates to win elections in 2023.”

She added that, “Although, I am a shy person, but as a politician, you must be bold, vocal and open up. You need to let people know what is happening. And presently, we are being taught how to communicate with the media, how can people know us? What are our plans and how do we publicise ourselves?”

Kwara/Kogi female candidates hail WARDC, others over mentoring workshops

Reacting to how to tackle challenge of funding the campaign as women, Hon. Yetunde Ibrahim noted that “everything is not about money, we are wives and mothers to the nation. Our past speaks favourably for us. Little things that we have done will speak for us. We may not be buoyant, but we have the knowledge and zeal to impact positively in the society. ”

Also speaking, the Deputy Governorship candidate of Labour Party in Kwara State, Mrs. Ronke Elizabeth Ehindero, said: “Since we started the training, I have had the required boldness and confidence to go the forthcoming election, unlike the usual me that doesn’t like speaking up. And I know with all I have learnt here, I will do better and will win this election in 2023 by the grace of God.

“My advice for women is to come out. You will agree with me that they have been pushing us back in the past because we are women, maybe their plans for us is to end up in the kitchen. I want women to come out not only in politics but in other human endeavours and social gatherings.”

The NNPP House of Assembly candidates, representing Ogori-Mangogo Constituency in Kogi State, Hon. Agela Amao, advised women to come out and participate in politics massively.

According to her, “Women can do it better becasue we feel the pains more than men. We know what is happening in Nigeria as of today. We know the weak points and how best to approach issues better.

“This is coming even as the federal government passed the new Electoral Act, which guarantees to improve level-playing ground for everyone, as well as improve women fortune in politics.”

In addition, the Action Alliance Deputy Governorship candidate in Kwara State,
Mrs. Princess Victorial Oluwayemisi Bamidipo, expressed her delight and satisfaction over the programmed stressing that, “This workshop is so interesting because it enlightens women, especially we, the candidates to know most of the things we didn’t understand before. I now understand that gender is not all about male or female.

“We also learnt that we should work with our agents, which we often take for granted. We are also given training on before, during and post-election strategies. As well as knowing the constitutional guidelines relating to our political careers.”

She further emphasised that women now know what to fight for and what not to, so they wouldn’t be making wrong accusations.

A Development Expert and facilitator at the event, Mr. Jide Ojo, had during his lecture titled: “Electoral Landscape and Framework, encouraged women candidates saying: “The new Electoral Act will benefit women the most” .

He added that, “All shenanigans practices done by men to religate women won’t be possible any longer under the new Electral Act. Even, Returning Officers, unlike previously, he doesn’t have absolute power to declare winner anymore. INEC can be petitioned and issues duly investigated.

“With the use of electronic voting, you can follow up the votes cast from INEC website and do the parallel tabulation to establish evidence” stressing that, “There is need to encourage women candidates to deploy reliable agents to polling units that can challenge misconducts.

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