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WOMEN IN POLITICS A CASE STUDY OF THE FOURTH REPUBLIC

  • Department: POLITICAL SCIENCE
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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1   Background of the Study

The question many people ask or will likely ask is why have the issues of women become so pronounced in both political and academic cycles today? The immediate response is that, there has been an awakened consciousness that women worldwide suffer all kinds and forms of discrimination. This, it has been argued, can only be fought if a worldwide and collective approach to the problem is evolved (Madunagu, 2003; Aliegba, 2005). The women question has also come up seriously as attempts by proponents of women’s rights have fought and continue to fight to make the women issue a major agenda for developmental.

Thus, programmes related to women have gained prominence, and have brought about the 2009 Cairo Programme of Action, which came under the auspices of International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD). One of ICPD’s critical goals is to bring education, and encourage women’s economic contribution, which will ultimately lead them to political participation (Agishi, 2002). We need to note that the struggle for the rights of women started long before the creation of the International Human Rights System. For example, in 1993, the Inter-American Women’s Commission of the Organisation of American States (OAS) that was formed in 1928 adopted a convention on the nationality of women, which was the first legislation on women’s rights (Aliegba, 2005; CENGOS, 2002).

In the United Nations system, women fought for the recognition of sex discrimination in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Committee on the Status of Women (CSW) was created parallel to the Commission on Human Rights itself, at its first meeting in1946. As a consequence, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the convention on the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women, signed in 1979 and came into force in 1981 (Aliegba, 2005). In addition, the Berlin Conference of 1995 gave worldwide collective support for women issues for world attention.

Nigeria is a signatory to several international instruments affirming women’s rights and equality with men (World Bank, 1994). Prominent among these international instruments are the Convention on the Political Rights of Women, which was adopted as far back as 1952 but ratified by Nigeria in 1980. The convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination against Women was adopted in 1979 and ratified by Nigeria in 1985. Furthermore, the Nigerian Constitution enshrines in it the principle of gender equality. In spite of the numerous international and national instruments as well as Constitutional provisions affirming the equality of men and women in all spheres of life, Party Politics inclusive; very few women have participated in the management of Nigeria, public institutions such as Political Parties, Legislative Assemblies and executive councils are depicted as “male clubs”. A peep into what transpired in the past republics including the most recent election (2011) that brought the present government into power still witnessed the marginalisation of women in politics.

1.2   Statement of the Problem

The incessant discrimination against women in politics is reaching a breaking point in Nigeria as a whole. There is even the problem of women discrimination among the female folks, not to talk about discrimination between men and women. Women are regarded as second class citizens as a result of the presumption that the kitchen is the place where women belong, bringing into question their role in politics.

•      What is the level of women involvement in Politics?

•      What are the challenges facing Politics?

•      How can women involvement in Politics be improved?

•      How can improved women involvement in politics accelerate overall national development?

1.3       Objectives of the Study

  i.      To know the level of women participation in politics in Nigeria.

  ii.    To know the challenges facing politics in Nigeria.

 iii.    To know how women involvement in Politics can be improved.

 iv.    To know how improved women involvement in politics accelerate overall national income.

1.4       Research Questions

i.          What is the level of women participation in politics in Nigeria?

ii.         What are the challenges facing politics in Nigeria?

iii.        How can women involvement in politics be improved?

iv.        How can improved women involvement in politics accelerate overall national income?

1.5       Research Hypotheses

Ho1:     There is no levelling ground for women to participate in politics in Nigeria.

Ho2:     Women involvement in politics cannot accelerate overall national income.

1.6       Significance of the Study

This study will be of immense benefit to other researchers who intend to know more on this study and can also be used by non-researchers to build more on their research work. This study contributes to knowledge and could serve as a guide for other study.

1.7       Scope of the Study

Basically, the scope of this research will only be woman participation in politic in Nigerian fourth republic between 1999-2015.

1.8       Limitation to the Study

The limitations to the study are as follows:

In ability to gather all questionnaire from respondent as a result delay on the part of respondent in answering questions

·            Bureaucracy problem as a result of in ability of respondent to fix appointment for interview.

·            Another problem that may be encountered in the course of this research is the inability to cover all areas of interest as a result of time constraint but will try my possible best to cover all lapses and make sure this research carried out within the limited time frame given to me.

1.9       Definition of Basic Terms

Woman: An adult female person

Politics: The art of science of government or governing especially the governing of a political entity such as a nation, and the administration and control of its internal and external affairs.

Involvement:   To occupy or engage the interest of something.

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