PDP stalwart decries women underrepresentation at S/West congress



Princess Abiodun Oyefusi, a stalwart of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Lagos, on Tuesday decried underrepresentation of women in the newly constituted South-West zonal executive of the party.

Oyefusi, a former PDP candidate for Lagos East Senatorial District, in a statement, said that the outcome of the party’s just-concluded South-West delegates’ Congress did not mainstream gender.

Oyefusi condemned the process for not giving adequate preference to women participation despite the passing of the 35 per cent affirmative women representation by PDP national body.

According to her, women deserve more than mere women leader position, but equal access to political leadership positions like men as supported by affirmative action.

She added that PDP did not give women, especially Lagos women, equal access in the just-concluded congress.

The former senatorial candidate decried what she called the “unfair domination of the political space’’ by men in spite of women having the number, experience and capacity.

“In 2014, we were about 49 per cent of the population and this is 2019. We should be about 50 per cent going by the ratio of increase.

“Despite our large number, we are not yet visible in the political space. We have never had proportionate representation in politics.

“We have never had a female president or female governor, or the recommended 35 per cent representation. Even we have never had a woman as chairman of any of the political parties across the states.

“Therefore, women need to be properly represented in all political positions for the sake of equality and justice. We have a lot to give Nigerians,” Oyefusi said.

She noted that it was saddening that the women were not well represented in the executives list, especially in Lagos.

According to her, the situation will deny women the opportunity to properly contribute their quota to nation-building.

Oyefusi explained that PDP had no justification to defend why women, especially Lagos women, could not be fairly represented in its political leadership.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that a former Deputy Governor of Oyo State, Amb. Taofeek Arapaja, emerged as PDP South-West Chairman, edging out Dr Eddy Olafeso, the immediate past Zonal Chairman with 13 votes.

Olafeso polled 330 votes while his opponent, Arapaja, polled 343 votes while 10 votes were voided at PDP South-West delegates congress held on Monday in Osogbo. (NAN)