The widening gap of gender inequality in Nigerian politics: Advocating a quota system approach

  • Martha Okorie
Keywords: Gender inequality, Nigerian politics, Quota system approach

Abstract

In Nigeria, only 25 out of 360 members of the Nigerian House of Representative are women and following the 2015 general elections, that number reduced to 17 out of 360. This is undoubtedly a consequence of gender inequality in the pursuit of political opportunities in Nigeria. A number of scholars have suggested that structural problems like the patriarchy and restricted economic opportunities for women is mainly responsible for their unequal representation in the country’s politics. In fact, Nigeria has one of the lowest rates of female entrepreneurship in sub-Saharan Africa. This situation, coupled with their socio-culturally ascribed roles as being restricted to motherhood or wife only serves to deepen their exclusion. Advocates on gender equality in Nigeria have noted that a viable means of reducing the gender gap would be the use of affirmative action which provides an institutional and legal framework for marginalized groups of the society to have equal representation. The counter-argument so far has been that the constitution of Nigeria does not prevent any gender from aspiring to electoral position, but prevailing evidence has shown that this is not  enough. This research paper therefore argues that for Nigeria to breach the gender inequality gap, it has to introduce quota system just like in federal appointments and in the educational sector to improve female representation in politics and by extension women voices within the political discourse.

Keywords: Gender inequality, Nigerian politics, Quota system approach

Published
2016-06-06
Section
Articles

Journal Identifiers


eISSN: 2227-5452
print ISSN: 2225-8590