1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
In most societies, women have not been accorded the freedom to such things like attending the same schools as men, owned property or receive equal pay for equal work. Women are look upon as second class citizens, they are often not allowed to participate in decision making even in matters concerning them. Participation in politics is taken to mean the involvement of women in both decision making bodies like the Executive and Legislative institutions. This research is not intended to prove that women are superior to men nor is it intended to portray women as having a desire to take the place of men, far from it. Women are human beings in their own rights and as such have made substantial and meaningful contributions in the society. The United Nations in recognition of the rights of women declared 1975 – 1985 as decade for women which was devoted to the subject of equality in political participation and decision making which was adopted by the 40th session of the UN General Assembly Resolution 40/108 on December 13th, 1982.1 Before then, on 10th December, 1974, the United Nations called for an international action programme for a short and long term measures in achieving the integration of women as full partners and equal partners in an effort and step to eliminate gender base discrimination. To strengthen this, the 8th of March, 1992 was declared International Women’s Day and was observed by the United Nations for its First time. The 8th of March, every year is set aside by the United Nations General Assembly to member states to reflect on the contributions made by women in different fields of national development.
In joining other nations to adopt the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, Kaduna state government affirms its support for the alleviation of numerous constraints on women. Concerted efforts were made by successive governments to enact laws towards the halting of all forms of bottle neck against women participation in politics. Right from the First Republic Kaduna State women have braced up against all odds and decided to take the bull by the horn, to square up with the men. Also in the Second Republic, the likes of Gambo Sawaba, Angelina Jaja, Mary Dogo etc. were women that participated actively in Kaduna State politics. Similarly, the Third and Fourth Republics saw a massive participation of Kaduna State women in politics which we shall come to see. Some prominent Kaduna State women were always on the vanguard for the observance of the International Women’s Day (8th of March every year) to add colour to this annual occasion: among who were Marina Mohammed: was a Nigerian former Ambassador to Zambia, Hon. Saudatu Sani, was chairman House Committee on Women Affairs and Youth Development in the National Assembly, Hon Florence Aya was Chairperson Zonal Working group on Child’s Right and Mrs. Maria Dogo: Chairman House Committee on Women Affairs Kaduna State House of Assmebly.2
It has become necessary to give this elaborate preamble so that we understand how far women in Nigeria and Kaduna State in particular had gone towards taking their rightful places in politics. This research provides the roles of women in Kaduna State politics for better understanding, this work is divided into five interesting chapters viz: General Introduction, History of Kaduna State, Women and Kaduna State politics 1999 – 2015, some notable women in Kaduna State politics and lots of issues that shall be discussed as sub topics.