The meeting between Aisha Buhari, the First Lady, and certain presidential hopefuls at the State House has been revealed.

Mrs Buhari has advised presidential candidates to consider women as their running mates ahead of the 2023 general elections.

The goal of inviting the presidential candidates to dinner at the Presidential Villa, according to the First Lady, was to gain their cooperation and support for increased female participation in administration.

She made the remarks on Saturday night at the State House in Abuja, where she met presidential contenders from several political parties for a Ramadan (Iftar) break of fast.

The President’s wife pushed political parties to allow women to run for various elected offices around the country, emphasizing the importance of gender equality in politics.

“In reality, given their voting power and active participation in political processes, it is past time for women to be adopted as running mates at all levels,” she stated.

“As we look forward to the 2023 election with renewed optimism, I am convinced that Nigeria will continue to thrive on the foundation of our democratic principles.”

The luncheon, according to Mrs Buhairi, was organized to allow the aspirants to share love and pleasure in the spirit of Ramadan and in the pursuit of nation-building.

The first lady enjoined the presidential hopefuls to remain focused on issues that strengthened the nation`s unity, brotherhood and national cohesion.

She urged all the aspirants to ensure tolerance, fair play and avoid violent tendencies by building bridges where necessary, especially during electioneering campaigns.

Mrs Buhari, however, reminded the presidential aspirants that the 2015 general election was a watershed in the history of Nigeria.

She said: “It was neither contested in the court of law, nor in the court of public opinion.

“Therefore, the greatest end-of-tenure gift that fellow Nigerians can give to the first family is another free and globally-acknowledged fair election come 2023.”

Some of the presidential aspirants who attended the event include the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu; Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, Governor Dave Umahi of Ebonyi State and his Bauchi State counterpart, Bala Mohammed.

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