On March 6, 2021, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) will organise a congress in the South East to elect new officers who will administer the affairs of the Party in the Zone. A mileage which this opportunity presents is to set, renew and reinvigorate the agenda for broad-based participation of women in the politics of the South East. The incompetence, brutality, masculinity and gender insensitivity that have marred the politics of the APC in the Zone are things which the PDP should factor in recomposing its functionaries in the South East.
In that way, the following question needs to be addressed by the leaders of the Party in the Zone, namely: How can the Party mobilize women in the South East for sweeping political actions? The attempt to answer this will ultimately point to the centrality of the office of Woman Leader of the Party in the Zone and the quality of person with whom to staff it.
Interestingly, a number of women have shown interest in the contest for the office which is allotted to Anambra State. One thing that is remarkable, even refreshing, is that some of the contenders understand what the issues are, and they have so passionately spoken to the need to reestablish a formidable PDP in the South and the roles which the women can play in this process.
A booby trap, however, before the Party is the debate about returning the old functionaries who stayed behind when the Governor of Ebonyi State, Engr. David Nweze Umahi, left the Party. This debate is unnecessary. If there is anything the Party needs now, that should be to inject fresh blood into its administration in the South East. Further, compensating those who did not leave the Party with Gov Umahi is a dangerously politically incorrect option. It is not impossible that some of them might have been left behind as moles within the Party, and in politics something that is worse that an enemy is a traitor.
So, as the PDP goes for a new South East Zonal Woman Leader, let a level play field be availed to all the aspirants. The issue of retaining serving officers, especially when they are glaringly underperforming, should be eschewed completely. Let their capacity count. Let their passion to serve, their consistency, their loyalty, their resourcefulness and their political energy be the yardsticks for determining who gets the job.
Principally, the political space in the South East yearns for accelerated women participation. The PDP can exploit this opportunity to raise a Woman Leader who can command the following of the women and rally them for electoral landslides.
On March 6th, therefore, two contenders are seeking to replace the present Woman Leader, Mrs Mary Omile. They are Lady Juliet Anaeme and Mrs Amaka Ebenebe.
This implies that three contenders are squaring up for action on that day. The need to allow for free and fair processes on that day would be a great achievement to the PDP in the South-East and Nigeria at large.
“So, as the PDP goes for a new South East Zonal Woman Leader, let a level play field be availed to all the aspirants. The issue of retaining serving officers, especially when they are glaringly underperforming, should be eschewed completely. Let their capacity count. Let their passion to serve, their consistency, their loyalty, their resourcefulness and their political energy be the yardsticks for determining who gets the job”