The National Association of Women Journalists has pledged to partner with the Independent National Electoral Commission to mobilise women to participate actively in electoral processes.
Ifeyinwa Omowole, the President of NAWOJ, made this known at the sideline of the North-Central Zonal Workshop organised by the European Centre for Electoral Support with support of the European Union on Wednesday in Abuja.
The event was tagged: “Enhancing women’s participation in the continuous voter registration and collection of permanent voter cards: The role of civil society organisations’’.
Omowole renewed the commitment of the association to work with INEC in sensitising women on continuous voter registration exercise.
The NAWOJ president said female journalists would work with INEC to mobilise women on continuous voter registration and the collection of permanent voter card.
She noted that it was easier for women to communicate with women, adding that the association has a lot of female journalists at grassroots level.
She added that the association would also sensitise women on the benefits of voter registration through one-on-one interaction and other programmes such as ante-natal days, market days and other places where women often gather.
She said: “The truth is that without women there can be no nation and women need to ensure that they drive the electoral process because at the end of the day it is about us and our children.”
She however noted that the media has a lot of role to play especially sensitising women on the issues of voter registration.
She said: “One of the things I see is that some of the women don’t even know, largely because some of the women are mobile.
“If you are living in Sokoto today and you get married and your husband is in Kaduna you move to Kaduna and stay with him, how do you move your registration to Kaduna where your husband now resides.”
She said voter registration exercise also affects young people, because some of the youths register while they were in school, most of the times elections are held when they were on holidays.
She said: “Again, how do you vote at home away from where you have registered as voter?’’
Omowole urged INEC to engage and educate the media on the procedures to enable them educate the larger public especially women and young people.
The NAWOJ president therefore appealed to INEC to adequately sensitise the media to ensure that the media understand the processes and procedures to enable journalists enlighten the public properly.