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This study or research on women empowerment in Nigerian
politics is divided into five (5) chapters. The first chapter is on
the topic that deals with the introductory part of the study by
providing a comprehensive historical background to the study,
identifying the major problems, grapples with the review of
relevant literatures and the methodological issues involved in
the research process. Chapter two (2) highlights the
relationship between politics and women participation in
Nigeria, taking into cognizance the periods of pre-colonial,
colonial, and post-colonial. Chapter three (3) focuses on how
culture is hindrance to women participation in Nigeria, other
factors affect the participation of women in politics. Chapter
four (4), how high educational attainment enhances women
participation in Nigerian politics. Finally, my chapter five (5) is
based on my summary, conclusion, and recommendation.
Then this study tends to establish gap between the existing
literatures in terms of whether there is any relationship
between politics and women participation in politics, as well as
how culture hinders women participation in politics, and the
enhancement of women participation in politics by high
educational attainment.
Table of Contents
Title Page – – – – – – – – – i
Approval Page – – – – – – – – ii
Dedication – – – – – – – – iii
Acknowledgement – – – – – – – iv
Abstract – – – – – – – – – v
Table of content – – – – – – – vi
Chapter One: Introduction – – – – – 1
1.1 Background of the Study – – – – – 1
1.2 Statement of Problem – – – – – 6
1.3 Objectives of the Study – – – – – 8
1.4 Significance of the Study – – – – – 9
1.5 Literature Review – – – – – – 10
1.6 Theoretical Framework – – – – – 30
1.7 Hypotheses – – – – – – – 35
1.8 Research Methodology – – – – – 36
1.9 Method of Data Presentation and Analysis. – 36-58
Chapter Two: The Relationship between Politics and
Women’s Participation in Nigeria 59-79
2.1 Women educational attainment in pre-colonial era
2.2 Women educational attainment in colonial era –
2.3 Women educational attainment in post colonial era
Chapter Three: The Culture and the Hindrance to
Women Participation in Nigeria – 80-94
3.1 Educational Factor – – – – – –
3.2 Cultural Factor – – – – – –
3.3 Social – Economic Factor – – – – –
3.4 Political Factor – – – – – – –
Chapter Four: How High Educational Attainment Enhances
Women’s Participation in Nigerian Politics 95-107
4.1 Recognition and Funding of the Office of the First Ladies
4.2 Establishment of Ministry of Women Affairs and National
Council for Women Societies.
Chapter Five: Summary, Conclusion and
Recommendation – – – – 108-116
5.1 Summary – – – – – – – –
5.2 Conclusion – – – – – – –
5.3 Recommendations – – – – – –
Bibliography – – – – – – – – 117-120
Chapter One: Introduction
1.1 Background of the Study
Politics is very important in every human society.
According to Pennock et al (1967) “Politics refers to the forces
that constitute and shape the government of the state and it’s
politics and actions” According to (Goodnow, 1904: 1959).
Politics involves the activities of the officials institutions of
state. This can be ascertained that the stability, cohesion and
level of socio-economic development that any society enjoys
are reflective of its political leadership. It ensures that human,
natural and economic resources are controlled by few people
who are interested in the art of management, on behalf of the
generality of the people. These are of course positions of
responsibility that confer on the holders, certain rights,
authorities and privileges of the politicians. In order to take
care of all human interests, the two genders are supposed to
be fully engaged in politics. However, the reverse is largely
dominated by the male gender, often to the detriment of the
female (Afolabi, 2008). The result is a “malevolent”
militarization of politics in Nigeria.
Participation in politics refers to different ways in which
people exercise their rights over the political process. It is seen
as a means to an end, where the end may be referred to as
political leadership Milbrath (1955) sees it as ranging from
voting to taking part in decision process, attendance, at
political meetings, funding and holding public and party
offices participation according to him involves discussion,
debates, and lobbying (both formally and informally).
The concept of participation lies in the culture of
democracy. The first principle of democracy adopted by the
council of the inter-parliamentary union Cairo, 16th September
1997, is stated as being
“… a universally recognized idea as well as a goal, which
is based on common values shared by people through out the
world community irrespective of cultural, political, social and
economic differences. It is thus a basic right of citizenship to
be exercised under conditions of freedom, equality,
transparency and responsibility, with due respect for the
plurality of views, and the interest of the policy.”
This concept gives room to every human being to have
rights to share in the making of decisions that affect their lives
and that of their community. This right was affirmed by the
establishment of the commission on the status of women (to
promote women’s political and economic rights) by the United
Nation in 1946. The year 1952 saw the adoption of the
convention on political rights of women world; wide, and in
1967, the convention for the elimination of all forms of
Discrimination Against Women (CE DAW) was endorsed. This
convention is upheld by all international, regional and
national legal instruments that concern children and women,
such as the convention on the Right of child (CRC) and the
organization of African unity (ONU, New African Union, AU).
Charter on the Rights and welfare of the child. It also includes
the National policy on women (NPW) adopted by the federal
government of Nigeria. In July 2000. with the ratification of
CEDAN in 1985, Nigeria undertook to work towards the
elimination of discrimination against women and goals in all
fields, whether political, economic, social or cultural. Since the
adoption of this policy by the government, very little
improvement in the exercise of women’s rights (especially in
the area of politics) has been witnessed. The Beijing
conference of 1995 on women articulated. Some areas crucial
to the empowerment of women. These include poverty,
education, healthcare, violence against women, effects of
conflicts on women, power-sharing and decision-making
mechanisms to promote the government of women,
management of natural resources and the environment and
the girl child. The Beijing platform for action made concrete
plans to ensure women’s equal access to and full participation
in power structures as one of its strategic objectives. It also
affirms the needs to increase women capacity to participation
leadership and decision-making processes and bodies. One of
the key initiatives in this ongoing process was the security
council resolution of 1325, which urged member states to
ensure increased representation of all decision-making levels
in national, regional and international institution and
mechanism for the prevention, management, and resolution of
conflict (UN, 2000AD/1325).
Taking the census of political activities both in the
country and in the world at large, the number of political
practitioners is quite insignificant as it is infinitesimal
compared with men. In African, with particular reference to
Nigeria, no women have been elected as governor of a state
either during the civilian or military rule. Much they have been
commissioners in the state or ministers at the federal level not
to take of presidency, though some critics may be quick to
mention, the case of Dame V. Etieba of Anambra State, but
the truth remains that she was not elected. However, when the
seat became vacant due to the treacherous and kangaroo
impeachment of the PDP led house of Assemble, being the
second in command she had to boss the show for the in term
which she did credibly well more than most of her male
counterparts in other states. No other event can adequately
represents the inhibitions and political road-blocks set for
women than, in which even when Hon. Patricia Etteh managed
to emerge as the first female speaker of the National House of
representatives, these male chauvinists working round the
clock saw to her exist.
It is therefore, on this background that this work.
“Women Empowerment and Politics in Nigeria” is born.

1.2 Statement of Problem
Women empowerment is revolutionary development in
the political history of Nigeria, Africa and the contemporary
global society. Since Nigeria independence women in Nigeria
have been given unfair representation in public affairs and
with increased demonstration of their managerial capabilities
in all spheres of human endovear, there is therefore, the need
to give attention to the quest for wider participation of women
in public affairs especially in leadership responsibilities.
Politics as well as I know is a game of numbers, the
history of Nigerian politics is mostly with male domination,
which have systematically excluded women from equal
participation in Nigeria political activities.
Women usually constitute a smaller of political partly
membership because of the social, cultural and religious
attitudes of different Nigerian societies which most often lend
to relegate women to the background. As a result, only very
few men, even among the educated, allow their wives to come
out and participate in politics. In Northern Nigeria, for
instance, an important factor inhabiting women’s participation
is the purdah system (i.e. house seclusion of women).
The essence of this research work is to investigate the
various causes of marginalization of women in Nigeria politics,
were the call for women empowerment.
To achieve this target, we therefore, pose the following
research questions:
1. Is there any relationship between politics and women
2. Does culture constitute a hindrance to women’s
participation in politics in Udi Local Government?
3. Can high educational attainment enhance women
participation in politics and lack of finance?
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The broad objective of this study is to investigate
women’s participation and factors that affect their
participation in Nigeria. The specific objective are therefore, as
1. To examine the relationship between politics and
women’s participation in politics.
2. To determine how culture hinders women’s
participation in Udi Local Government Area.
3. To find out how high educational attainment enhances
women’s participation in politics.
1.4 Significance of the Study
Every research endeavor is prompted by a societal need
to address a pressing problem. This study therefore is no
exception, it has both academic and political importance.
The study will fill the existing gap in knowledge, it will
also serve as an academic contribution to the movement for
the recognition and realization of gender quality in the Nigeria
matrix, particularly since Nigeria is a nation constitutionally
based on the principle of democracy and justice.
The practical significance of this study include among
other things that its findings and recommendations will be
useful to policy makers, non-governmental organization,
women organization and other stakeholders in the quest for
gender equality.
It will equally be of importance to students, scholars and
researchers in the field of political science and public
administration that are saddled with the task of organizing
and managing the public issues and affairs of the larger
Nigerian society.


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