2019: Coalition of 10 women civil society groups endorse Borno APC guber candidate

Khaltum, Leader of the Coalition 
Abdulkareem Haruna
Ten all-women civil society community based organisations (CSOs) in Borno state on Monday  registered their support for the gubernatorial candidacy of Professor Babagana Umara, the flag bearer of  All Progressives Congress (APC) in Borno state.
In what seemed a rare occurrence in the Nigerian political space, the 10 CSOs and CBOs, who are mostly known for their interest for humanitarian engagement , said they bear no regrets in their public endorsement of a politician ahead an election. 
According to the group whose leaders' addressed the media  in Maiduguri, their show of support for Mr Umara was because, a they believe, his integrity precedes even his candidacy. 
The spokesperson of the group, Miss Khaltum Rabiu, said the leaders and members of the 10 women CSOs found it necessary and expedient to take side in the coming election so that "mistakes would not be made in the choice of who takes Borno to even greater heights after Governor Kashim Shettima."
Reading from a prepared text, Miss Khaltum who is the founder and chief executive of Khaltum Foundation for Peace, a Maiduguri-based NGO that stands against violent extremism, said they chose to back the APC governorship candidate because he had proved his worth in the last four years that he functioned as the commissioner for Reconstruction, Rehabilitation and Resettlement. 
The group had last week's Friday also made a public call to the Boko Haram insurgents  to lay down their arms and embrace dialogue, saying they were worried with the recent displacement of people from northern Borno. 
"We call on all insurgents to shield their swords and embrace peace because we as mothers wives and daughters are tired of the ongoing wanton killings and bloodshed that is going on here in Borno state," they said.
The Women Coalition at the press
conference in Maiduguri
The women said they believed the government of Professor Zulum, if elected in to officer by March this year, has all that it takes to, not only rebuild the state, but also find better ways of resolving the Boko Haram conflict and all the grievance that led to it. 
"It is on this basis that we are out here to formally endorse the candidacy of Professor Babagana Umara Zulum, the gubernatorial candidate of the APC because we, as women, believe he has the best interest of Borno state at heart. 
"We support Professor Umara because we are of the firm believe that Professor Zulum, being an inside member of the Borno NGO community, having served as Commissioner for RRR ministry, is fully aware and even better understand the magnitude of problems that confronts women and children in the ongoing conflict; and know how best to tackle it. 
The ten coalesced NGOs comprised Girls Organisation for Human Rights and Social Justice; Da'awah Wal Islam Women Organisation; Initiative for Women Empowerment; Nimble Youth Empowerment and Development Initiative; New Life Women Association for Peace; Sisters Against Violent Extremism; Women Association for Promotion of Peace and Unity; Future Prowess Association; Hannun Rahama; and University of Maiduguri Muslim Women Association.


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