Enugu State Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi has pledged to increase the number of women currently in his government so as to meet the 35 per cent affirmative action.
The governor made this known in Enugu yesterday while addressing over 1,000 women in state who staged a walk to the government house to demand for the inclusion of more women in government.
Ugwuanyi said he was happy that women from three political parties could come together to fight a just course describing it as a historical landmark.
He said no good government could ignore the place of women in politics because they were influential and to a large extent, determine the progress of a state.
He said: “My 12 years at the National Assembly has afforded me the opportunity of traveling to 156 countries and I have discovered that these countries are rapidly making progress.
“Reason being that they have learnt that women are powerful and as such, they give them key government positions to oversee.
“This, also, has been my conviction and my motivation for appointing women to certain key positions when I became the governor.
“Because you are demanding for more and having been convinced by the capability of women already in my government to deliver effectively, I will begin processing your demands immediately.
“From now on, major appointments as well as positions of Permanent Secretaries will be given to women,” the governor said.
Ugwuanyi added that a government that ignored women did so at its peril and was bound to be retrogressive.
In her remarks, the Deputy Governor of the state, Mrs Cecilia Ezeilo, appreciated the women for jettisoning their different political differences to fight for their rights.
She said that her being chosen as a deputy governor for the first time in history is a pointer that the governor recognized the place of women in governance.
Earlier, the president of Inter Party Women Network (IPWN), Mrs Josephine Nwokedike under whose aegis the walk was staged, said the walk was an initiative of Women Aid Collective (WACOL).