Ms. ‘Rinsola Abiola is the SA (New Media) to the Speaker House of Representatives in Nigeria, President APC Young Women Forum (APC-YWF), Board Member – Young Women in Politics Forum (YWiPF) and a Youth Representative for the APC Board of Trustees
Her career journey in politics is one that has taken precision and determination and an example worthy for young women looking to make a change from a political platform to emulate.
The representation of women in politics and governance is dismal - @Bint_Moshood Click To Tweet
What is your career role?
I’m a Public Relations consultant and a young woman in politics. I currently head the All Progressives Congress (APC) young women forum, a support, mentorship, and capacity building group for young women aged 18-35, who are members or supporters of the APC.
I am currently the youngest person appointed to the APC board of trustees, and one of the three youth representatives.
When did your career in politics begin?
My full-fledged political participation began in late 2013. Before then, I was a member of civil society, through a number of youth-focused NGO’s.
The decision to join mainstream politics was informed by a desire to be part of the process, as opposed to sitting outside of it and offering criticism. I came to the realization that a political office would enable me to do so much more, and for a larger number of people than I could as an individual.
What impact can women in politics bring to a nation?
The involvement of young women through mentoring and capacity building would ensure the grooming of a new generation of women who are prepared to hold both elective and appointive positions and have a clear strategy for engagement.
Are there special qualifications you need to have a head start in politics?
For basic political involvement, no. But when it comes to the elective office, there are minimum requirements established by law, e.g – completing a secondary education.
For appointive positions, one would require certain skills or qualifications in order to be deemed worthy of such a position. Intellectual capacity is key and formal education provides a level of refinement which helps a great deal.
It is also important to have good communication skills – this entails knowing the right way to engage a particular type of audience, from the highly educated to the not so educated.
What can young women do to be taken seriously in a male-dominated field?
Same as anyone needs to do if they want to be taken seriously, have something to offer, add value, develop a good number of skills required and seize good opportunities to prove your mettle.
Be loyal, dedicated and committed to the ideals of your environment. Take a professional approach to everything and distinguish yourself.Do not leave room for doubt, and know how to be firm without being forceful or harsh Click To Tweet
What roles have you held in the past and how did that help in getting you to where you are now?
I served as the founding PRO of the APYF in 2014, and some months later, as the PRO/Secretary, when the APC Young Women Forum was formed, I also served
These roles increased my knowledge of what young people actually desire from the government. I learned communication skills and how to view time as one of my most valuable resources. Most importantly, I learned how to have a strong work ethic.
I’ve worked with a magazine brand, in a bank, I got the required certification in public relations, a profession I had always admired and set up a firmPolitics is expensive and you need resources - @Bint_Moshood Click To Tweet
As one of the executives of the Young Women in Politics Forum (YWIPF), how will this help in empowering other young women to pursue a career in politics?
I’m set to begin a peer mentoring programme with young women both here in Abuja and other states of the federation, which will be aligned with the objectives of YWIPF.
Also, knowing that a Forum exists for young women with similar interests will encourage many to join, as one thing I have noticed is that some are interested but are just at a loss as to how to begin.