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AFTER keenly fought National Assembly contests across 98 senatorial zones and 325 federal constituencies on February 25, only 17 women are left standing.

No fewer than 92 women fought for 109 senatorial seats and 288 women contested for the 360 House of Representatives seats. There were 1101 senatorial candidates and 3,122 House of Representatives flagbearers in all.

So far, 11 senatorial and 35 House of Representatives slots are yet to be occupied due to inconclusive polls that will be conducted on March 18, according to the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC. 

Unless women win more seats on Saturday during the 46 polls, only 17 of them will be in the 10th National Assembly made up of three senators and 14 Reps.

While none of the eight serving female senators will be in the 10th Senate, seven of the 14 female Reps are returning legislators.

The number of those elected is a great setback for women representations in the Senate where they had eight slots in the 9th Senate but a slight improvement of in the House of Representatives where figure increased from 13 to 14.

As it is, with 17 women, 2023 marks the worst outing for women since 1999 when 16 women (three senators and 13 Reps) served in the National Assembly. The best outing for women, so far, was in 2007 (see table) when 36 women (9 senators, 27 Reps) made it to both chambers. 

Attempt to provide 111 special seats for women in the National Assembly to bridge the wide gender gap in the federal legislature failed as a bill proposed to that effect was not voted on during the last constitutional amendments.

Currently, women’s representation in Nigeria’s parliament is among the lowest in the world. The overall national average for women participation is around 6 per cent for elective and appointive positions which is below the West African sub regional average of 15 per cent. Nigeria ranks 32 out of 35 sub-Saharan countries when it comes to representation of women in politics.  

Dwindling fortunes of women in NASS

1999 (4th Assembly): 3 Senators, 13 Reps

2003 (5th Assembly): 4 Senators, 21Reps

2007 (6th Assembly): 9 Senators, 27 Reps

2015 (8th Assembly): 7 Senators, 22 Reps

2019 (9th Assembly): 8 Senators, 13 Reps

2023 (10th Assembly): 3 Senators, 14 Reps


*Banigo Ipalibo Harry, PDP, Rivers West

*Ireti Heebah Kingibe, LP, FCT, Abuja

*Adebule Idiat Oluranti, APC, Lagos West

House of Reps

*Nnabuife Chinwe Clara, YPP, Orumba North/Orumba South, Anambra  *Orogbu Obiageli, LP,  Awka North/Awka South , Anambra

*Gwacham Maureen Chime, APGA, Oyi/Ayamelum, Anambra

*Regina Akume, APC, Gboko/Tarka, Benue

*Ibori-Suenu Erhiatake, PDP, Ethiope East/Ethiope West, Delta 

*Fatima Talba, APC, Nangre/Potiskum, Yobe 

*Onuh Onyeche Blessing, APC, Otukpo/Ohimini  Benue 

*Zainab Gimba, APC, Bama/Ngala/Kala-Balge, Borno

*Beni Butmak Lar, PDP, Lantang North/Lantang South, Plateau

*Goodhead Boma, PDP, Akuku Toru/Asari Toru, Rivers 

*Khadija Bukar Abba Ibrahim, APC, Damaturu/Gujba/Gulani/Tarmuwa, Yobe 

*Onuoha Miriam Odinaka, APC, Isiala Mbano/Okigwe/Onuimo, Imo *Adewunmi Ariyomi Onanuga, APC, Ikenne/Shagamu/Remo North, Ogun  KingibeIreti, wife of former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, and 1993 Vice Presidential Candidate of the Social Democratic Party, SDP, Ambassador Babagana Kingibe, was born on June 2, 1954. Ireti, who is also the younger sister of Ajoke Mohammed, the wife of former Head of State, Major General Murtala Muhammed, won the sole Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Abuja sole seat. 

She was educated at Queens College, Lagos; Washington Irving High School, and the University of Minnesota, United States, where she bagged a degree in Civil Engineering.

The Senator-elect worked as a quality control engineer at the Bradley Precast Concrete Inc from 1978 to 1979/ Ireti was project supervisor for the Directorate of Works at the Nigerian Air Force station in Ikeja, Lagos between 1981 and 1982, after completing the mandatory one-year national youth service.

She joined the Minnesota Department of Transportation Design unit, where she worked as an engineer between 1979 and 1991.

She entered partisan politics in 1991 when she joined the defunct Social Democratic Party (SDP). She was appointed as the adviser to the party’s national chairman.


Dr Ipalibo, the medical doctor-turn-politician is the deputy governor of Rivers State. Born to the Harry family of Obuama in Degema Local Government Area of Rivers State on December 20, 1952, she is the first female deputy governor of Rivers State and has been in the saddlesince May 29, 2015. 

Ipalibo was schooled in Queens College, Yaba, Lagos between 1964 and 1968 and returned to the same school between 1969 and 1970 for a high school result.

Thereafter, she proceeded to the University of Ibadan and obtained a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) and qualified as a medical doctor in 1976.


Born on November 27, 1970, at Alaworo in Ojo Local Government area of Lagos State, Dr Adebule is a writer, educationist, and a politician. The lecturer-turn politician served as the 15th deputy governor of Lagos state and the sixth woman to occupy the office from 2015 to 2019.

She began her working career as an academic at Lagos State College of Primary Education, LACOPED, Noforija, Epe as a lecturer in the Department of Religious Studies and later transferred her service to the Lagos State University as a lecturer in the Department of Curriculum Studies and later Language Arts and Social Studies in the Faculty of Education.

Her political sojourn started with an appointment as a commissioner 1 in the Lagos   State Post Primary Teaching Service Commission (PP-TESCOM), now Teachers’ Establishment and Pensions Office, by Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu from October 2000 to February 2005 and later as board member of the Lagos State Scholarship Board from February 2005 to November 2005.

She was appointed Secretary to the State Government by the Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola in July 2011. She was elected as deputy governor Akinwunmi Ambode in 2015.

Lilian Orogbu

Professor Lilian Orogbu, a lecturer in the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, UNIZIK, won the Awka North and South federal constituency of Anambra State on the platform of the LP.

Professor Orogbu, Dean, Faculty of Management Sciences, Nnamdi Azikiwe, is a Professor of Strategic Human Resource Management. The  accomplished administrator has served in many capacities in the university including being head of the Department of Business Administration.

The returning officer of INEC, Mr Uche Nriagu, declared the Labour Party candidate, Lilian Orogbu winner with 29,629 votes, defeating her closest rival, Obi Nwankwo, who got 18,081 votes.

Khadija Bukar Abba

Khadija Bukar Abba is a four-time member of the House of Representatives, representing Damaturu, Gujba, Gulani and Tarmuwa federal constituency of Yobe State. She is returning for the fifth time. She was first elected in 2007 and was re-elected in 2011, 2015, 2019 and 2023. Abba has also served as commissioner for transport and energy, Yobe State, as well as minister of state for Foreign Affairs under President Muhammadu Buhari.

Regina Akume

Regina Akume is the wife of Senator George Akume, a former two-term governor of Benue State,  and current Minister of Inter-Governmental Affairs and Special Duties.

Blessing Onuh

Onuh Onyechi Blessing is the daughter of former Senate President David Mark.

Beni Lar

Beni Lar is the daughter of late foremost politician , Second Republic Governor of Plateau State, and first National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Chief Solomon Lar.

She has served in various committees of the House of Representatives such as Women Affairs and Human Rights. 


Erhiatake Ibori-Suenu is the daughter of former Delta State Governor, Chief James Ibori. She won the Ethiope Federal Constituency of Delta State on the platform of the PDP. She was elected after scoring 20,814 votes, while her closest rival, Halims Agoda of the APC,  got 15,172 votes.

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I’ll Give My Best As Tinubu’s CoS – Gbajabiamila Assures Tinubu



Gbajabiamila Tinubu

Following his appointment as Chief of Staff to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu today, June 2, 2023, the outgoing Speaker of the Federal House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, has assured the President of his unalloyed dedication and loyalty to the job.

The lawmaker made this known in an appreciation message to the President on Twitter after the announcement of his appointment.

The PUNCH reports that Tinubu had also appointed a former Deputy Governor of Jigawa State, Sen. Ibrahim Hadejia, as Deputy Chief of Staff and former Minister of Special Duties, George Akume, as Secretary to the Government of the Federation.

Gbajabiamila, who has spent the last two decades in the Nigerian parliament, expressed profound gratitude to the President for finding him worthy of the appointment.

Pledging his allegiance to the service of the President, the new Chief of Staff stated that he will put in his best effort to ensure that the herculean task ahead of him is discharged with due diligence.

He wrote, “Thank you Mr. President, Bola Tinubu, for finding me worthy of being your Chief of Staff. Having spent the last 20 years in the Nigerian Parliament, and after winning my 6th term election into the National Assembly, I shall work with Mr President in discharging the enormous task ahead of him for the peace and progress of the federal republic of Nigeria. I shall give my best when I take office on June 14 2023 as reflected in Mr. President’s official letter.”

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Withdraw Your Petition Against Tinubu, LP Faction Tells Obi



The Lamidi Apapa faction of Labour Party on Friday told the presidential candidate of the party, Peter Obi, to step down his case at the Presidential Election Petitions Tribunal over what they described as “lack of seriousness”.

According to the faction, the advice became necessary following the incident which happened at the Tribunal on Thursday where the court stepped down hearing in the petition filed by Obi and the LP against the election of President Bola Tinubu.

Speaking on fuel subsidy removal, the LP faction knocked the Nigeria Labour Congress and Trade Union Congress of Nigeria for rejecting new pump price of petrol.

They insisted that the position of the LP on removal of fuel subsidy during the campaign has not changed, saying “we cannot reverse that position because it was not our candidate that won the presidential election.”

The factional National Publicity Secretary of the LP, Abayomi Arabambi, raised these issues during a press conference in Abuja.

He told journalists that Obi has not been able to provide any concrete evidence to back this claims since PEPT began sitting.

Arabambi alleged that Obi went to court to challenge the victory of Tinubu because he (Obi) and his co-travellers had different motives as against the wishes of the Nigerian masses who freely offered their supports to LP.

He said, “We have followed with keen interest the shameful developments and approach by the so-called legal team assembled by Peter Obi challenging the outcome of the February 25 presidential election by the Independent National Electoral Commission and we have, like many Nigerians, come to the conclusion that Obi is not only taking Nigerians for a ride but would continue to waste the hard earned resources donated by Nigerians for this purpose to even enrich himself the more.

“All of you here who have been following this case can recall that the day we had altercation in court with (Julius) Abure’s group, that INEC announced that Peter Obi could not pay for CTC form EC08 and other documents. That now compelled them to only present 30 per cent of the materials they would need for the hearing at Election Petition Tribunal.

“How would any right thinking person go to election tribunal with only 30 per cent of documents where none of all them would be accepted or agreed to be tendered by other political parties?

“Three days ago, they said two of their counsels were sick and yesterday (Thursday), they could not even file a single process with the array of SANs with Obi. This is what we have been saying that they are just trying to hoodwink the public, deceiving the Obidients and giving them false hope that they have something at the tribunal.

“It’s evident from the attitude displayed by them when they wrote a letter to INEC that Obi could not pay N1.5 million. Who are they deceiving? Counsel were sick?

“That’s why we have consistently maintained that Obi is not serious. He came in to the party with nothing. He didn’t fund the election, he didn’t fund the party, he didn’t do anything for the party. He only came to mess of the entire process and to deceive Nigerians that he has something to offer to them.

“Labour Party is thereby calling on him to step down his selfish ambition and stop messing up the party if he has nothing serious to present to the tribunal.”

Fuel subsidy

Arabambi said, “Whatever we have agreed on during our campaign, and as a party that promote peace, equity and justice in Nigeria, then we can’t be found approbating and reprobating at the same time. Our position is that, once Obi has said he would remove fuel subsidy from his first day in office, the same organized labour who stood on that position must not be seen working in cross purpose on the same thing that Tinubu, Atiku and even Obi said they were going to do.

“Obi said subsidy was an organized crime that must be stopped. The NLC can’t call for any strike. If they do, it is obvious that they are just being mischievous for a reason best known to them or maybe they have something against the President that they should come out open to tell Nigerians. That is our position as Labour Party.”


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Cost Of Governance: We Don’t Need Senate, House Of Reps — Shekarau



Former governor of Kano State and senator representing Kano Central, Ibrahim Shekarau, has decried Nigeria’s high cost of governance.

Consequently, Shekarau, who spoke in an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today on Wednesday night, advised President Bola Tinubu to cut down the number of federal lawmakers.

He said: “Left to me, we don’t need to have the two chambers, the two houses. It’s costing the country. I agree, a democracy means getting as many involved as possible, but the way it is going on now, it’s almost 500 legislators nationwide; I don’t think we really need this much at the moment.”

The two chambers of the National Assembly is made up of 109 senators and 360 House of Representatives members, bringing the total number of federal lawmakers to 469.
He, however, expressed doubt if President Bola Tinubu could muscle the political will to do this and other constitutional amendments that would be beneficial to the country.
Shekarau argued further that cutting the number of parastatals would affect the number of oversight assignments, reducing the burden on the nation.
“Then you’ll discover that the legislative arm will also have to be downsized because if there isn’t much to do at the centre, you don’t need all of this sea of hundreds of people really to do oversight assignments.

“I have been subscribing to the idea of devolution of powers. The Federal Government should really cut its own costs by devolving a lot of these responsibilities down the line, to the states and to the local governments,’’ he said.
According to him, the Federal Government is spending “so much” at the centre and creating too many agencies and parastatals.
He said: “Unfortunately, we’ve not had leadership that has the courage. There was the Oronsaye report during Jonathan’s time, which has yet to be implemented.
“Former President Goodluck Jonathan did not implement it; former President Muhammadu Buhari did not implement it.
“The moment you create a parastatal, you’re already talking of board members, chief executive, directors, departments, and the overhead cost of running all these agencies add quite a lot to the expenses of running the government.”

He said cutting down on the number of federal lawmakers and reducing the number of parastatals and agencies would save the country money to be ploughed into areas, including education, health and other social services.

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