ROLE OF WOMEN’S CLASS AND GENDER STATUS IN NIGERIAN POLITICS

PROJECT TOPIC- ROLE OF WOMEN’S CLASS AND GENDER STATUS IN NIGERIAN POLITICS

CHAPTER ONE

1.1   INTRODUCTION

There has been both national and international campaign for greater participation of women in the socio-cultural, economic and political activities in Nigeria since politics is seen as traditionally male affair, for many decades now. In the previous transition, women were incorporated into the political system as subordinate, ineffectual adjuncts to men.  Thus, the nature of their incorporation reveals the persistence of male dominance and gender bias over time. Women have participated in the

political dispensation even though not many women emerged at the end of the day due to they were marginalized and subjugated by men. It has been war against discrimination of women in salaries and allowances, appointments and employment, promotion and other benefits, exclusion from certain professions and even their socio-cultural status and obligations with equity fairly achieved by women in the field of educational disciplines, governmental administration, the war

has been shifted to socio-cultural and political activities., Equipped with education, women are demanding for equal participation in political processes. This demand encompasses participation in decision making both at the party and at governmental level, occupying command positions as men does. It is the level of women’s participation in those activities that this view argues that population of women in the society and under any democratic process justifies this demand.

Political role here means the part played by women in the process of state power seizure, consolidation and the use of state power, while women as concept here implies females of the universal adult suffrage age. According to Omoriyi (1992). Women are the determining power of who seizes state power in a democratic process. Dr.Osusu (1993: 147) therefore argued that women should not only participate in democratic process as it relates to party politics and institutions of

governance but should be actively involved in all aspects of national development process. It has been concern of women and many writers/scholars that this situation obtains. Different reasons have been adduced to explain the non-integration of women into the political decision making process. Such ranges from education, social responsibilities to socio-cultural factors.

However, the level of literacy among women, the involvement and achievement of some women like queen Amina, chief Mrs. Ransom Kuti, chief Mrs. Margaret Ekpo, Winnie Mandela Corazon Aqueno, Benazir Brato Mrs Eunice Egwu, Dora Ekunyere, Ngozi Okonjo Iweala among others trends to nullify these factors. The prejudice among the Igbo’s about the role of women, the socio-cultural norms and valves of the Igbo society, and the pattern of politics system appeared to scheme women out of active political activities. A panacea to this problem should be sought for and that is the primary aim of this project.

PROJECT TOPIC- ROLE OF WOMEN’S CLASS AND GENDER STATUS IN NIGERIAN POLITICS

1.2      STATEMENT OF PROBLEM /RESEARCH QUESTION

 Participation in politics and governance is a cardinal ingredient of democracy and associated there in.  The end product of   governance and Political progresses is to secure the life of people.   Hence, there has always been the need for all to make meaningful and sustainable inputs in governance. In developing states, such as Nigeria, women participation in politics is relatively low.  But due to the growing autoimmunization in Nigerian state, there is improvement, development and changes in

social relation of production which have empowered women and made them amendable to political activities. However the study has sets out to investigate the socio-historical and political factors in our socio-formation that continuously undermine increased in participation of women in politics, with the question stated below;

  1. To what extent did Nigeria women participated in politics?
  2. What are the socio-cultural factors that determine and influence Nigerian women participation in the governance of Nigeria?
  1. What should be done to enhance women participation in the future politics in Nigeria?

1.3   OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY

  1. To determine the extent of women participation in Nigeria from (1999-2003)
  2. To determine factors that limit the participation of women in Nigeria politics?
  3. To evaluate the effects of women to participate actively in politics?
  4. To identify what should be done to or enhance the participation of women in politics.
  5. To identify obstacles to the participation of women in politics.

1.4 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

This research will work both on theoretical and practical significance, and open a new course of discussion in the study of women vis-à-vis, of political activities in Nigeria. It shall provides reasons and the solution to the problem of political marginalization of women in Nigeria. However, this project will arm different women organization with viable option for actions towards seeking of gender equality.  It shall serve as a socio-cultural re-orientation for the women of Nigeria.  It shall also arm the legislative body with necessary data to make enactments to redress the situation.

1.5 THEORITICAL FRAMEWORK

In analysis made on women and political participation in developing state Nigerian can be explained form the view of group theory.   Group theory was propounded by early Lathan, Truman, Bentley and most of other political scientist, but Authur Bentley was the one that traced the root to pluralism. Group theory emphasizes more importantly on the group affair rather than individual as a unit of political analysis. 

Politics is a group affair rather than individualism, it is an affair where individual is enveloped and marketed as a group and become the success of an individual within the group. Arthur Bently in his exposition about the group theory is of the opinion that, the group is one of the principal agencies that brings about equilibrium in the society.  The participation of women in political process should be seen as a struggle to gain political advantage over other group that is operating in the same political system.

On this note all the women associations are engaged in a perpetual struggle for power to balance the gender inequality and to achieve or gain political advantage in the Nigerian politics. The group theory will lead as to political behaviour of women, political culture and political attitude, based on this; the application of the group theory in this current research work becomes most appropriate to the researcher.

1.6 HYPOTHESIS

        The domination of men over women has led to low participation of women in Nigeria politics. The following hypothesis are herby proposed:

  1. The socio-cultural factors, traditional valves, beliefs, and norms that exist in various ethnic groups in Nigeria limit the participation of women in politics?
  2. The violent nature of Nigerian politics discourages women participation in politics. 

1.7 SCOPE OF METHODOLOGY

        Since this is a social research, we adopted the secondary data sources such as text bocks, Journals, Magazines, New papers, website/internet work as our method of data collection for gathering our information in order to achieve the aims of this project.

1.8 LIMITATIONS

        It may be humanly impossible to make this research without difficulties on the process of gathering information for this work, many problems was encountered, these include; shortage of related literatures, due to low participation of women in previous elections.  Another problem was non-availability of the needed statistical records or inaccurate number of women involved in politics in that ‘’third 2Repushc’’, and inability to get in touch with some prominent women for an inter view.

        However, these problem listed above would not make this work not be a reality.

1.9 OPERATIONALIZATION OF CONCEPTS

  1. a) Women: Adult female human beings in general.
  2. b) Political participation: Act of taking part in a political activities or politics.

The general level of participation in a society is the extent to which the people as a whole are active in politics.

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