By Lilian Onyewuchi and EricJames Ochigbo
The Women in Politics Forum (WIPF) has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to overhaul the security structure in the country in view of the unending killings ongoing across Nigeria.
The President of the forum, Ms Ebere Ifendu made the call at a press conference following the killing of over 100 people in Barkin Ladi, Riyom and Jos South Local Government Areas of Plateau.
She said that the forum was saddened by the continued killings around the country saying that thousands of lives had been lost in Benue, Taraba, Kaduna and Zamfara.
Ifendu said that the killings were not only condemnable, they were also unacceptable as it was on record that women and children were the most victims.
“We call on the Federal Government to overhaul the security structure of the country, we cannot continue to lose lives and property when is the responsibility of government to protect citizens.
“We demand the immediate arrest and prosecution of the perpetrators of this heinous crimes,” she said.
Ifendu said that WIPF was also concerned over the indiscriminate arrest of innocent citizens by security agencies without proper investigations.
The president pointed out the recent arrest of Sen. Enyinnaya Abaribe by the Department of State Security (DSS) for a matter in court
She called on President Mohammadu Buhari to direct security agencies in the country to observe the principle of the Rule of Law and respect for human right.
The forum demanded the immediate release of the senator and other detained citizens held without proper investigation.
On women representation in politics, Ifendu said though democracy was a game of numbers, it had not reflected the population of women in Nigeria.
At the federal level, she put women representation in government at five per cent and various degrees at state level with none hitting the 35 per cent affirmative policy.
Ifendu said that in the absence of any legal decument supporting women participation in politics, political parties could bridge the gap.
She said that political parties determines who become candidates, demanding that parties obey legal document setting them up and ensure internal democracy.
The forum commended the Governor and citizens of Rivers for electing 23 women as Vice Chairman and an unprecedented numbers as councilors in the just concluded Local Government elections in the state.
She said that Rivers is one of the six states that has a woman as Deputy Governor, commending Governor Nysom Wike for appointing women into versions top government offices.
The president called on other states to emulate Rivers, canvassing that the gesture be replicated at the federal level in 2019.