As Nigerians prepares towards the 2019 national elections, the EU has gone ahead of time to secure the hopes of women in the country.

Ahead of the forth coming general elections, a special training has begun in Lagos for the electoral desk officers of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The training commenced this week under the theme “BRIDGE Training on Gender and Election in Nigeria,” and is expected to last for a week.

The “BRIDGE” stands for Building Resources In Democracy, Governance and Elections.

The training is an initiative of the European Centre for Electoral Support (ECES), to train the officers on the concept of gender mainstreaming.

According to Mr. David Le Notre, the Project Director of ECES, he said that the training was developed to improve the participation of more Nigerian women in electoral process.

“Records show that women demography makes up the largest chunk of voters’ population, but the women in Nigeria constitute only 5.8 per cent of the political space.

“In 2015, only six women were appointed into the cabinet while there were seven female senators and six female deputy governors.

“Also in 2015, only one female contested for the presidency while four contested for vice presidency, one for governorship and five for deputy governorship.

“These are indicative of low participation of women in electoral processes and government,” he said.

Le Notre said the training workshop would familiarise INEC desk officers with the concept of gender and its importance in election.

“I hope this workshop avails participants the requisite knowledge for effective gender mainstreaming in the Nigerian political space,” he added.

According to Dr Adekunle Ogunmola, INEC’s Chairman of Outreach and Partnership Committee, he affirmed that following the commission’s committed to building an all-inclusive democracy, the training is an adopted strategy of the INEC to build the capacity of its staff.

“This course is aimed at equipping our desk officers with the capacity to carry out their duties of gender mainstreaming in the electoral process.

“It is one of the many ways the commission has adopted to build capacity of its staff.

“The commission is committed to building an inclusive democracy where equality and equity are guaranteed,” he said.