By James Ibechi
Since the aftermath of the 2011 presidential election saw victorious Goodluck Jonathan making up to 35 percent of his political appointments feminist at the national level, women participation and general political awareness among the Nigerian women are undoubtedly on the rise.
So when the All Progressives Congress (APC) women leaders of the Oju, Benue State Chapter of the broom party, chose the day of Nigerian freedom – 57th Independence Anniversary, to converge on the Makurdi home of the Deputy Majority Leader of the Benue State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Nick Eworo, for a reason which was basically political, it was no surprise. It’s still the women political participation and awareness which is growing and extending to the grassroots.
The mission of the party feminist leaders at Nick Eworo’s home was to endorse the state lawmaker representing Obi State constituency for the 2019 race for Oju/Obi federal constituency seat. And they did it aptly and rightly.
The yesterday endorsement of the Benue lawmaker would probably not be the first by women in Nigeria since political aspirants have been parading for 2019, but since our Igede women have exactly not known for taking sides in the political arena, it is significantly good to note that Igede women are now aptly making their opinions heard loud and clear on the political turf.
The Igede party women unlike the Jonathan women political appointees might not have endorsed Eworo necessarily in anticipation of any reward of appointments for them.
“Making the official endorsement of the Leader (Nick Eworo), Mrs. Kate Ode, Oju LGA APC women leader alongside the eleven Council Wards Women Leaders eulogized Eworo, as they counted his achievements in the House that have endeared him to them, one by one, assuring him that they will continue to stand by him through to 2019 and beyond.
“Mrs. Ode pointed out that they are aware and comfortable with the unprecedented milestones credited to Eworo as a member of the State Assembly all in the utmost interest of Igede Nation, expressing the optimism that he will make a great leader in the National Assembly if given the opportunity come 2019,” the women leader was quoted in a report.
From the report, it is glaring that Rt. Hon Nick Eworo earned the women’s endorsement by sheer records of his achievements.
Nick Eworo’s record of achievements including single-handedly facilitating the introduction of the translation of NTA Makurdi news to Igede language which is now a daily feature on the station, could not be unconnected with why the women are reposing their confidence on him, to go further to the National Assembly in 2019.
Apart from that, Nick Eworo though arguable, has been respected beyond his immediate constituency of Obi, by all Benue people as the most vocal lawmaker in the state now.
Perhaps it is a gift you cannot take away from him.
He was severally reported to have played the pivotal role in the Igede’s struggle for Paramount Ruler, but which was torpedoed by the Tiv supremacy in the state assembly.
However, Igede did not go empty-handed. They got First Class Chief, with which the women noted Eworo’s lion contributions in achieving the new height for the Igede nation in the socio-cultural sphere.
Nick Eworo, with his innumerable other laudable achievements, track record and quality of representation of the Igede nation at the state Assembly, is believed by many Igede people to possess the qualities the Igede people are looking for in the person who will represent them at the National Assembly, which is why his endorsement by the APC women leaders is seen by observers as apt.
Nick Eworo is humble, accessible, selfless, vocal and a bridge builder, who relates with all people across political divides.
He is in the race for 2019 Oju/Obi federal House of Reps seat and will likely slog it out with incumbent Rt. Honourable Samson Okwu who’s seeking a third term, as well as Egbiri Idaah, Ode Igbe, and other aspirants from Oju who are being touted to be angling against Nick Eworo and Samson Okwu.