APC primaries: Women aspirants allege gender marginalization

•Threaten to boycott 2019 election

By Umar Muhammad Puma

Some women aspirants of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) yesterday staged a protest at the national secretariat of the party, alleging marginalization in the just concluded primaries elections.
Speaking with newsmen during the protest, one of the aspirants from Imo State, Milicent Duru, said despite paying amount of money for nomination and expression of interest forms, the ruling APC marginalized them at primaries nationwide.
“We women have been marginalized for a very long time; and it has to stop, because we still need to be included for the 2019 general election.
“We were promised 35% affirmative for women. In August the president of Nigeria came for a summit organized by Women in Politics, the president spoke that women were going to be included. His wife, the First Lady, also spoke that women will be included; and even the National Chairman of the APC promised us that this time around we must get our 35% affirmative.
“So far, what we have in APC now is about 0.5% from statistics. So, to us it’s a scam and it’s not as if we do not have the capacity or we did not buy nomination forms. We bought the forms, we paid half of the money compared to other parties, which does not charge women for anything. So, we paid good money; but to our surprises, we are wondering why we should not be included in the affairs of the country when we are the best when we are the main people that will bring out people to vote in the 2019 election.
“If this continues, it shows we are going to boycott 2019 election. That is exactly why we are protesting today.
“We are women of APC this is APC secretariat. I am speaking on behalf of the women in APC Why? because we even paid 50% of the forms. No party in this country pays up to what we paid. So, we should be given the respect; we should be included in this country.”
When asked for their demand from the leadership of APC, Duhu said: “What we are (women) having now in APC is 0.5%. It doesn’t meet up at all. We also have the right to protest; we bought the forms, we should be included. We shouldn’t be treated like people who do not have a right in this country. We have every right to do anything we need to do; so we should be respected.”

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