Former President Olusegun Obasanjo, yesterday decried the poor number of women in the two chambers of the National Assembly and called for amendment of the constitution to reserve 40 percent slots for women. Obansanjo stated this while presenting a paper titled, “Nigeria Democracy and the Journey so far: The role of women,’’ at the 70th Birthday celebration of Iyom Josephine Anenih, Former Minister of Women Affairs.
He said “Our Constitution should be amended to allow 40 per cent of women participation in politics; it is about time that women should feature in all aspect of our democratic process and practice. “The health of our democracy can be judged by the participation of women; the low number of women in National Assembly is unacceptable and makes mockery of gender balance,’’ Obasanjo said.
He said that democracy was the best form of government that soothes Nigeria because it promotes unity, adding that the country’s democracy is alive but not healthy. “Democracy is a system of government that allows team spirit and debate before decisions are reached; it is a government for all citizens to benefit without fear or favour. The former president who congratulated Anenih on her birthday said she was a woman worth celebrating. Iyom Anenih was the National Woman Leader of the Peoples Democratic Party during the administration of Obasanjo