by Achadu Gabriel, Kaduna
An NGO, ‘ActionAid of Nigeria,’ has commenced capacity building training of women and youth participation in the whole political process in Kaduna, under a programme, titled, ‘We-YOU Project’ capacity building training workshop.
The programme, also tagged, ‘Campaign for inclusion of women and young people in political and governance processes (We-YOU Pro),’ is targeting 600 women and youths in Kaduna and Kano States, respectively, for the training.
The four days’ training programme, beginning from 28th February – 4th March in Kaduna, is in partnership with Legal Awareness for Nigerian Women (LANW), and funded by Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO).
Speaking to journalists, the Governance Manager, ActionAid, Mr Celestine Odo, said the We-YOU project for women and youth participation in politics in Nigeria 2023, lunched few weeks ago, began the training of 150 women and youths, selected from six local government council areas of Kaduna State, including people with disability.
Also speaking, project coordinator of Campaign for Inclusion of Women and Young People in Political and Governance Processes (We-YOU) ActionAid, Mr Frank Abu, said the importance of participation of more women and youths in political process cannot be overemphasized, adding that no nation could do without women and youths.
In a statement, titled, ‘Media Advisory March 1st 2022,’ made available to journalists, the NGO stated that, “ActionAid Nigeria is partnering with LANW through the Campaign for Inclusion of Women and Young People in Political and Governance Processes (We-YOU) Project to organise a 4-day capacity building workshop on Policy, Budget Engagement, Political Education and Influencing for 150 young people and women in Kaduna State.
“Funded by the FCDO, the We-YOU project seeks to strengthen relationships between citizens, government, and politicians to break the pernicious cycle of patronage-based politics and elite control over power and resources as well as increase citizens’ confidence in Nigeria’s democratic system within a 24-month period.
“This capacity building training is in tune with the project’s streamlined objective, which includes mobilize a critical mass of women and young people leading/engaging campaigns towards translating Kaduna citizens’ demands into policy actions.
“Participants are drawn from 6 LGAs, spread across the 3 senatorial districts of Kaduna State, which include Kaduna South, Kaduna North, Igabi, Jema’a, Chikun and Zaria,” it stated.
It continue that, “Compared with other age groups, young people have increased risks of involvement in political violence, while women are often marginalized and remembered only when their voting support is required.
“The We-YOU project has opened a platform to change this narrative, to ensuring the inclusion and participation of youths and women in politics and governance.
“While women and young people are encouraged to join politics and to actively participate in governance processes, it remains a fact that they lack the capacity to effectively engage in the process.
“In Nigeria, the major issues identified as ‘stumbling blocks’ to women and youth participation revolves around the lack of political education, socio-cultural factors and poor access to political orientation, which invariably, affects their self-confidence and breeds a sense of incapacity.
“To bridge the generational gap and position of the women and youths into the political arena, capacity building is one of the strategies needed to equip them; hence, this workshop will focus on some of the key concepts and skills needed as well as act as a foundation for women and youths in preparation for political engagement,” it added.
“In line with this, ActionAid Nigeria will be providing tailored trainings to the participants, with carefully curated modules that will enhance their civic engagement and political participation, especially those whose intentions are to run for office within the political parties or in the general elections.
“It will also create opportunity for them to be mentored and guided through carefully curated modules that will meet their needs and address these technical gaps, which include, Budget Engagement: Analysis of the Kano and Kaduna 2022 Budget; Mobilizing Shared Commitment: Building power through relationships, the art and act; Communication: Communicating to Inspire effective action, and the Politics of Informed Engagement: Political Parties and Electoral Process in Nigeria.