In an effort toward ensuring free, fair and credible polls, the Independent National Electoral Commission INEC, in collaboration with the center for peace education and community development (CEPEACECODE) on Saturday trained hundreds of women in Taraba state on voting process and how to participate more actively in the election.
INEC resident electoral commissioner in the state Alhaji Abba Baba Yusuf who described women as “one of the most important stakeholders in the electoral process” said that “the training had become imperative to ensure that this vast section of the society is not left out of the process as a result of ignorance or general apathy.”
Yusuf assured the women that each and every vote that is rightly cast would count as INEC is poised to turn the electoral process around for good.
Gender desk officer at INEC Mrs. Edna Hilary Kaigama, while addressing the workshop said that it was aimed at facilitating good outing for women at the election and to make sure that votes of women count.
While responding on behalf of the various women groups that were represented at the workshop, the state chairperson of National Council of Women Societies NCWS Mrs Punarimam Atenji thanked the INEC and CEPEACECODE for organising the training and paying particular attention to women who are often considered a negligent section of the society.
Atenji said that the priority attention given to pregnant and lactating mothers as well as the aged and disabled during the election would not only encourage mass turnout and participation of women at the exercise, but is a positive step in reshaping public action towards women and other vulnerable sections of the society.
She urged the women to see the election as their “only chance to speak out loudly to be heard and make their impact felt.”
Other speakers at the training urged women to keep a close watch on their children in the days leading to the election, the election day and the days after the election to make sure that they are not lured into taking up arms as thugs or been used by so serving politicians to rig and disrupt the electoral process.