Nigeria is one of the countries that are exploring measures that may increase women’s participation in government at all levels, from the local to the national.
Although there could be signs that female politicians may face gender discrimination from male members of the political parties to which they belong which can undermine the ability of women to reach or maintain leadership roles. But Nigerian women are breaking the glass ceiling that prevents them from competing with their male counterparts.
Here is a list of bold and beautiful women in Nigerian politics who played prominent roles towards development of the country:
1. Florence Ita-Giwa
The 70 year old Ita-Giwa began her political career way back as 1992 as the senator for the Cross River South constituency.
Her involvement in the devolution of power constituent assembly 1994-95 earned the nickname “Mama Bakassi”. She was Olusegun Obasanjo’s special adviser on national assembly matters in 2003.
2. Dr Kema Chikwe
In the history of Nigerian politics, Chikwe was the former federal minister of aviation. She later went on to run as Imo state governor. In 2009 she became the Nigerian ambassador to Ireland and she also currently holds the position of national women leader of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
3. Senator Christiana Anyanwu
Anyanwu practiced for 15 years as a Nigerian journalist before her imprisonment from 1995 to 1998. She was jailed for treason after reporting on a failed coup d’état against the government.
Anyanwu, however in her senatorial evaluation is noted to have sponsored bills on occupational health and safety. Also to criminalise and punish discrimination and segregation against Nigerians.
4. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala
Dr. Okonjo-Iweala is a role model for women hoping for political appointments. She has served twice as Nigeria’s finance minister and as minister of foreign affairs.
She was the first female to hold both positions. Iweala is highly respected, an influential global leader, and an experienced economist on finance and economic development.
5. Dora Akunyili
Late Akunyili had a top priority: the eradication of counterfeit drugs and unsafe food in Nigeria. As the director for National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) and Nigerian minister of information and communications from 2008 to 2010, she faced considerable risk to her personal safety in her fight to combat the issue of fake drugs.
Published March 2017 on Information NG