Mrs Adetokunbo Tobun-Agbesanwa, the stepdaughter of former President, Olusegun Obasanjo is set to contest the Lagos governorship elections on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The stepdaughter of former President, Olusegun Obasanjo is following in his footsteps with a foray into politics.
Mrs Adetokunbo Tobun-Agbesanwa is the daughter of Major Moji Adekunle-Obasanjo and Chief Adekunle Tobun and she is set to contest the 2015 Lagos governorship elections.
The intending candidate is currently a Senior Special Assistant to Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State and she is set to contest on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
She spoke about her aspirations in an interview with Tribune Newspaper, Excerpts below:
How did your parents influence your involvement in politics?
My parents played a great role in my development and my passion for politics. I wanted to study law but found myself studying political science. My father, Chief Adekunle Tobun’s activities during the Third Republic, when he contested for the gubernatorial primaries and the campaigns then, gave me a lot to learn and think about.
My late mother, Major Moji Adekunle-Obasanjo, gave me all the support and opportunity to utilise my knowledge and, at every instance, continued to boost my self-esteem. I am very lucky to have such great personalities as parents.
Women in politics are often considered as wayward and are often abused by their male counterparts. How has your experience been so far? What are your regrets?
There is no gainsaying the fact that in our society, women have great obstacles in attaining political positions. These are socio-economic factors rather than physical. There have been arguments that women themselves frustrate the chances of their colleagues at securing elective offices, while another argument is that male politicians manipulate the system to the detriment of women.
In many cases, women are discouraged by late night meetings and women who attend have been labeled prostitutes. I believe, however, that politics is not the only arena where we have wayward women or sexual harassment. It pervades the society; schools, the corporate world – everywhere. Politics is an aspiration to serve; it is not do or die.
What gives you the impression that the time is ripe for a female governor in Lagos State, given its political sophistication, ethnic heterogeneity and the historical reality of male dominance in Lagos politics?
I could go on and on in answering this. But, I will try my best to summarise the issues. First, as with any endeavour or responsibility, the eligibility of any individual aspiring for any job or position is measured by his credentials and suitability for the job.
The constitution provides that a person shall be eligible for the office of governor if he or she is a citizen of Nigeria by birth, at least 35 years of age; is a member of a political party and is sponsored by that political party. There is no provision for gender discrimination in this article. Consequently, I believe I even have more than enough requirements for the job.
Women’s participation in politics – not only in Lagos State but in Nigeria – has been very poor due to a lot of factors that have nothing to do with the physical constitution of the female gender. That is the reason I truly identify with my party, the APC, which has as its slogan, ‘change.’