OrderPaperToday – The total number of bills contributed by the 13 female reps in the 9th House of Representatives is 86, representing 6.31% of the total bills sponsored in the House at midterm.
The number of female reps brings women representation to 4% in the current 9th House, compared to their male counterparts that constitute the remaining 96%.
Of the 86 bills sponsored, Nkeiruka Onyejeocha of Abia State (Isuikwuato/Umuneochi) is the highest contributor with 30 bills: 2 of which are at committee consideration and 9 are awaiting second reading. Onyejeocha’s bills contribute in bringing Abia’s bills score to 119 at midterm. In 2017, she sponsored the bill which made it compulsory for hospitals to provide emergency treatment for victims of gunshot and has contributed to give female legislators from Abia a notable record at the National Assembly. Interestingly, Onyejeocha serves as the deputy chief whip of the house and has been a serving member since 2007.
Second on the chart is Lynda Chuba Ikpeazu, representative of Onitsha North/Onitsha constituency of Anambra state. The 55-year-old rep is currently serving her third term; her first term was from 1999 – 2003. She has 14 bills to her credit; the highest in her state among the house members: 6 out of the 14 bills are waiting to read a second time. Among the bills she has sponsored is the HB. 1093 Legal Practitioners Bill, 2020. Ikpeazu’s performance speaks volumes of the quality of representation by Anambra women in the 9th Assembly
At third place is newbie rep, Taiwo Olukemi Oluga with 10 bills. She represents Ayedaade/Irewole/Isokan in Osun state and also chairs the House committee on Women in Parliament. Notable among the bills she has sponsored are – HB. 792 Gender and Equal Opportunities Bill, 2020; and HB. 795 Women’s Representation in Legislative Houses Bill, 2020. Her bills contribution alone makes up 17.2% of bills by Osun reps at midterm and places her at second place on the state’s bills chart.
Aishatu Jibril Dukku (Dukku/Nafada) of Gombe state ranks after Oluga by bills sponsorship with 8 bills which also places her second after state colleague Abubakar Yunusa Ahmad. She chairs the House committee on Electoral Matters- an office that ensured she played a visible role in the electoral act amendment bill 2021. Among her bills is the HB. 1372 Nigeria Electoral Offences Commission Bill, 2021 which is currently awaiting second reading.
The daughter of late Solomon Lar- former Plateau state governor and founding chairman of the People’s Democratic Party – Beni Lar, takes fifth place on the chart with 8 bills all of which were sponsored in the first year of the 9th Assembly. The younger Lar was first elected in 2007 and she has been a serving member representing Langtang North/Langtang South since then. Regardless of making the chart, her performance considering her political and legal background can be described as below par. Lar’s 8 bills make up 7.6% of Plateau’s 104 bills score and she comes sixth on the state’s chart.
Miriam Onuoha (Isiala Mbano/Okigwe/Onuimo) of Imo places sixth on the chart and third in her state with 5 bills one of which is the HB. 837 Cannabis Control Bill, 2020. Of her 5 bills, 4 are awaiting second reading and none have been passed yet.
The only female house of representatives member and first timer from Ekiti in the 9th Assembly, representing Ijero/Ekiti West/Efon – Ogunlola Omowumi Olubunmi- has three bills to her credit. Her bills; HB. 743 Tertiary Hospitals Development Tax Fund (Establishment, Etc.) Bill, 2020; HB. 900 National Centre for Women Development Act (Amendment) Bill, 2020; and HB. 902 Pension Reform Act (Amendment) Bill, 2020 have all been read the first time. These 3 bills place Olubunmi on first place among reps from Ekiti, she comes immediately after her female colleague in the senate – Sen. Olujimi.
On a tie with her colleague from Ekiti is Zainab Gimba (Bama/Ngala/Kala – Balge) of Borno state. Gimba is also a first timer, none of her bills have been passed. HB. 128 Nigerian Institute of Management Act (Amendment) Bill, 2019; HB. 129 Federal Housing Authority Act (Repeal and Enactment) Bill; 2019 and HB. 1226 Umar Ibn El-Kanemi College of Education, Science and Technology, Bama, Borno State (Establishment) Bill, 2021 are the bills to her credit. Despite being the representative of one of the hardest hit areas by boko haram insurgency, none of her bills are indicative of the current security situation of the area. Considering her performance which was completely shadowed by the 43 bills sponsored by a single rep from Borno, the agitation for more female representation in parliament looks to be lacking in one of its main arguments; more quality representation by women.
With 2 bills to credit is Onanuga Adewumi Oriyomi (Ikenne/Shagamu/Remo North) of Ogun state. The 55-year-old is currently in her first term as a rep and only female from her state in both chambers and she places sixth out of the nine Ogun reps. Both her bills are establishment bills and while one is currently waiting for committee report, the second bill has been read the first time.
Having only a bill to their credit are Onuh Onyeche Blessing (Otukpo/Ohimini) of Benue state; Tolulope Tiwalola Akande – Sadipe (Oluyole) of Oyo state; and Khadija Bukar Abba Ibrahim (Damaturu/Gujba/Gulani/Tarmuwa) of Yobe state.
Like Beni Lar, Onuh comes from a political background – she is the daughter of former senate president, David Mark, and is said to enjoy political favour due to the influence of her father. However, her performance so far is a far cry from what the expectations for someone with her background. Out of the 27 bills by Benue reps, Onuh’s one bill brings her to a tie with another rep and is contribution of 3.7% to the midterm total.
Tolulope Tiwalola Akande – Sadipe is a first timer like Onuh and others earlier mentioned and the bill to her credit is the co-sponsored HB. 899 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 Act (Alteration) Bill, 2020 that is currently awaiting committee report. As for her performance in her state, Sadipe posts more bills than two other reps who have no bills.
Khadija Bukar Abba Ibrahim a former minister of state for foreign affairs and wife of former governor, senator Bukar Abba Ibrahim. She is a returning member. Her only – HB. 1152 North–East Development Commission Act (Amendment) Bill, 2020 is waiting to be read the second time and it one of the 3 bills sponsored by six Yobe reps in two years.