Female Journalists shower encomiums on Ondo First Lady for her women’s advocacy initiatives
..pledge support to keep projecting her good deeds
It was a moment of testimonies and shower of encomiums on the wife of Ondo State Governor, Arabinrin Betty-Anyanwu Akeredolu for her numerous positive impacts on women and girls in the state through her various initiatives, by leaders of Female Journalists in Ondo State at a Women Supporting Women’s hangout with the media aides of the First Lady in Akure, the Ondo State capital.
The Senior Special Assistant on Media and Press Secretary to the wife of the governor, Oluwatobiloba Fademi who coordinated the hangout, explained that since all the programmes of Her Excellency are gender-friendly and are geared towards proffering solutions to challenges confronting womanhood, there’s a need for women groups to rally round and support her in their little capacity.
Quoting Her Excellency’s watchwords, ‘Women Should Support Women’, the SSA Media said the Nigeria Association of Women Journalists, NAWOJ, as a group of women who shares same values with the office of the First Lady needs to synergize and drive the vision of Mrs Akeredolu.
According to her, the Ondo First Lady had accorded the association special attention by always carrying its members along in all her programmes since the inception of the Akeredolu-led administration, having recognised their importance in the gender advocacy vision, hence, the reason they should support her with their professional tools.
She averred that it is obvious women are facing so many challenges maritally, economically, and in their various fields of profession especially subjugation and relegation, but could be tackled with cooperation among them.
“We have challenges, and men will not fight for us, the project of Her Excellency, Arabinrin Betty-Anyanwu Akeredolu is our project because it’s a women project”, she stated.
Speaking, the state Chairperson of NAWOJ, Doris Olumoko appreciated Her Excellency for the support she had been given the association during her tenure, especially the appointment of Mary Agidi as a Special Assistant on Media to the governor, which was due to the maganiminity of the First Lady.
She also saluted the SSA for first of its kinds hangout with female Journalists, and expressed the readiness of NAWOJ to keep projecting the good works of Ondo First Lady.
Her words: ” Apart from partnering with Her Excellency, we are bold to say that she stands out in the comity of First Ladies in Nigeria because she is not only touching lives with her programmes but also building the future generation of women that will take over, and we see this in BEMORE. Some of these girls are now in the University studying Engineering courses due to their interest and knowledge in solar which they acquired at the SUMMER BOOTCAMP; many female entrepreneurs are coming out of BEMORE initiative. We’ve seen women’s lives saved through BRECAN.
“We will continue to support her with the tools of our profession, we will keep projecting her positively even beyond the shore of Nigeria so that women and girls out there will know that there’s something different happening in Ondo State and will continue to celebrate her as an association; honestly when the list of Appointees came out and our own Mary Agidi made the list, Her Excellency made us proud, we are very very grateful”, the NAWOJ Chairperson added.
Some of the leaders of the association who spoke shared their personal testimonies to the kind gesture of Mrs Akeredolu towards Women in Ondo State. A former State Chairperson of the association, Alhaja Fatima Muraina, expressed her happiness about the widow’s care palliative which she benefited from without having any political influence.
She said: “I have been looking for an avenue to tell Her Excellency how I felt about the widow’s palliative; mama is a very good woman, I don’t know her from anywhere but the way she does her programmes is very unique; I am a widow and have been in this state for years, we have past First Ladies, yes! They have been doing widow’s programme but the one Mrs Akeredolu did last year surprised me.
“I was forced to go and register online because I have seen many widow’s programme that weren’t done properly, and have made me to loose interest, but someone encouraged me to try this one. I was surprised the day they called me, this is exceptional, to the extent that old women and the downtrodden benefitted without knowing anybody in the Government. It is apolitical and though, what she gave us has finished, I will never forget that”.
Also speaking, the state Auditor of NAWOJ, Olufisoye Adenitan commended Her Excellency for saving women’s life through her NGO, Breast Cancer Association of Nigeria; saying, “there was a woman in my street who had Breast Cancer and they came to me having known that I’m a journalist. I gave them the contact of our Reporter in the office of the First Lady who connected her with BRECAN, and to God be the glory the woman was assisted; I was surprised because immediately she was taken to FMC Owo and her bills was taken care of by Her Excellency”.
Others who were at the meeting including, the Secretary of the association, Patience Ibeh who noted that posterity would remember Mrs Akeredolu for her kind gesture for appointing a NAWOJ member as one of her media aides, and the Deputy Director of the state Ministry of Information, Foluke Amodu who implored Her Excellency to draw NAWOJ more closer; the National Financial Secretary, Deola Adekunle, the State Financial Secretary, Folasade Oladehinde, the State Vice Chairperson, Tola Gbadamosi.
Others were, the Assistant Director in the ministry of information, Olamiposi Odofin, the Information officer of Idanre Local Government, Mrs. Arije, the State Ex-Officio, Gbemisola Falana, and the Chairman of the 2021 NAWOJ week, Ayoola Fatokun.
Meanwhile, the Special Assistant on Media to Her Excellency who was also at the meeting with the SSA, lauded Her Excellency for deeming it fit to give her such a professional elevation, noting that the Ondo First Lady is indeed an Epitome of a good mother, and passionate woman who discovered her when she needed encouragement.
She used the medium to appeal to her fellow female Journalists to have passion for the profession, noting that she was just doing what she loved doing without a premonition that it would attract someone like the First Lady.