Nigeria’s First Female Senator Is Dead

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Franca Afegbua, the first female senator in Nigeria, is dead.

The Afegbua family announced her passing in a statement issued on Sunday.

Afegbua, 79, was a native of Okpella, a town in Etsako-east LGA of old Bendel state (now split into Edo and Delta states).

“The Afegbua family of Edo state has confirmed the demise of the first woman senator in Nigeria, Senator Franca Afegbua, whose sad event occurred this morning, Sunday, March 12, 2023. She combined beauty and brain during her service to Nigeria. Funeral details will be announced by the family soon,” the family said.

She was elected the senator representing Bendel-north in October 1983 under the National Party of Nigeria (NPN) in Nigeria’s second republic.

Her political journey was, however, cut short as the military coup of December 1983 toppled the civilian government less than three months after she assumed office.

Speaking on how she was able to clinch her senatorial seat at a time the Nigerian political space was largely dominated by men, Afegbua told PLAC in a 2022 interview that women are known to keep their promises.

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