Dr Babatunde Ahonsi, the United Nations Resident Coordinator has publicly called on political leaders ahead of the 2023 elections to follow the spirit and letter of the new Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment Law and get more female representation into their youth wings and other positions of leadership.
He made that plea at the Sierra Bay Hotel before delivering his keynote address at a UNDP and PPRC (Political Parties Registration Commission) organized three-day training on Mediation and Negotiation for young political leaders ahead of the elections in June.
The Resident Coordinator said that political parties and their leaders, including women and youth, community and religious leaders, journalists, businessmen and businesswomen, police and military personnel, and Government officials have not only a role, but also a social responsibility, to encourage peace and stability.
“We also want to encourage you, as political leaders, to foster an environment for women and youth to participate peacefully and safely in the upcoming elections, be it as activists, candidates, or voters,” Dr Ahonsi indicated.
He added that promoting dialogue between different political parties and social groups, particularly youth and women, is a central ingredient of democracy and conflict prevention.
The new GEWE law which sets a minimum 30 percent quota for women in leadership could double the number of women in the country’s next parliament and more women in cabinet.