Published December 20, 2014 by EMMANUELLA ODUM


In the wake of the ground breaking declaration of a running mate for  APC’s presidential candidate, Gen Muhammadu Buhari, unabashed shouts of approval have continously rent the Nigerian political airwaves as the party supporters reaffirmed their unwavering support fervently emphasizing that the Professor of Law, former Lagos state Attorney-general and a representative of the Divine, Pst. Yemi Osibajo was indeed an ideal choice. This move may undeniably influence the ruling party to return to its drawing board and desperately sketch a plan aimed at quenching the seemingly growing support for its rival, in its bid to retain the coveted seat of power in the forth-coming elections.
Consequently, one may overtly assert that whatever the criteria may be in choosing an able “vice” for the presidential candidate in any political party, the issue of gender will certainly not be recognized!  As disturbing as this trend of relegating our women to the background may seem, it is nevertheless considered the norm as women are globally viewed as mere opportuned participants in the governing process of a state .However to placate the injured feelings of the female citizens, paltry reasons such as the need to present a formidable individual (in other words “a male”) to create a balance of personalities at the polls will be adduced. Other premises including the desire to ensure that the party is not unfairly ridiculed or unduly mocked, for presenting a proposed female vice-president will also be tendered. Since women aren’t known to depict ingratitude, we must appreciate the little crumbs that fall from the master’s table even when our prowess at holding leadership roles cannot be denied (as evidenced in the laudable success stories of Late Professor Dora Akunyili , Mrs. Diezaini Allison Madueke and others). These little crumbs which come our way are often cloaked in the almost –insulting title of “women leader”, or the “juicy ministerial appointments” and the increasing spate of “deputizing roles”. Oftimes we are mummified as stooges to perpetrate the act of distracting the electorate with a view to depleting the votes of an influential candidate!
Governance isn’t a term ascribed to the opposite sex alone, yet women have fought admirably to attain the silent nod of respect from their male counterparts in almost every issue beginning with the few leadership roles given as a compensatory gift. Hence for every feministic action which deviates from the accepted norm of female docility , the story of a heroine is told and recorded in history as a feat which “must never” be repeated and not necessarily one which must further depict the equality of the sexes.  To buttress this view, an apt example is the daring Elizabeth Smith Miller, who in the 1850’s rebelled against society’s hypocritical derision of women adorning “male apparels” and invented the “ladies bloomers”, a type of female baggy trousers consisting of a skirt and loose fitting pantaloons. This invention which formally birthed the ingenuity of trousers in high female fashion of the civilized world obviously riled and still does upset the proponents of certain factions with chauvinistic ideologies, yet history celebrates her not just as a woman who dared the unthinkable but whose actions must remain in the minds of society as just that … unthinkable!
In the field of leadership and political governance, the same pathetic notion is pervasive. A she-male who possesses that peculiar innate strength and capacity to govern a people, against all societal odds of gender discrimination, is virally celebrated and this is targeted at  underlining the near impossibility of attaining the seat of power even when it is a vivid reality that the she–male can indeed do it better.  It is an undeniable fact that the best candidate to adorn the regal robes of a nationally acclaimed leader is usually the vivacious and passionate female, giving the salient attributes of male domination which includes extreme corruption in the highest echelons of power and an obvious break down of Law and order. However if indeed females are better leaders, why then do we celebrate the very few women who are “opportuned” to rule (and do so impressively) whereas men are conventionally understood to be the “divinely ordained” rulers and thus need no exaggerated celebration? Could this festival of deceit be done with the aim of conveying a silent message to other women, that it is indeed a rarity to be conferred with the mantle of authority and should never be taken as a given? I think so!
In summary, it is trite to assert that most of society’s conventions and norms possess an influential origin, whether mentally warped or scientifically illogical. Tracing the origin of many of these norms has become a pastime for me especially where issues regarding the female are concerned. For most of the planet’s age, the complex matters of the FEMALE has featured in the sometimes twisted minds of society’s male dominated jury. Thus whether by religious injunctions or by scientific dictates, the female is and has always played second fiddle or sometimes been a non-existent fiddle in the creation of the harmonious melody that is life.
Think about it and while you are at it , I remain THE AMAZON and my amazing quill loves you! * winks *


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