Investing in women key to achieving progress

Investing in women key to achieving progress

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The wife of Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Olayemi Oyebanji, stressed the importance of investing in women to accelerate the wheel of progress in human society.

She made the remarks on Friday during the celebration of this year’s International Women’s Day organized by the Ministry of Women Affairs in collaboration with the office of the First Lady held at the Ekiti Parapo Pavilion in Ado Ekiti, the state capital.

The celebration also featured an exhibition of products from the council areas and distribution of food commodities.

Speaking while being conducted around to observe the products exhibited by women from the 16 local government areas and 22 local council development areas, Dr. Oyebanji stressed the need for all people of the state and women especially to take agriculture more seriously.

While admiring some farm produce exhibited by women at the event, the First Lady advocated the need to go back to the farm to ensure food security in the state and alleviate hunger.

She emphasized that if Ekiti citizens go back to farming, everybody will be able to feed his family and himself, and hunger will be banished from the state.

Dr. Oyebanji used the opportunity of the occasion to advocate for the implementation of the “Every Home a Garden” initiative of the First Lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Senator Oluremi Tinubu, to boost agriculture, produce more food, and ensure food security in the country.

She further stated that the “Every Home a Garden” initiative, spearheaded by Senator Tinubu, empowers women to mitigate economic downturns through sustainable food production.

The Governor’s wife also suggested that Adire Ekiti fabrics be worn as commemorative dresses by delegates, as each local government and local council development area has its own designs of the fabrics for the International Women’s Day Celebration for 2025.

Oyebanji said this year’s International Women’s Day “marks a celebration of resilience, creativity, and resourcefulness of our women and girls in Ekiti State.”

She said: “We are grateful for Governor Oyebanji’s approval to distribute food commodities, addressing immediate needs while championing long-term economic empowerment. “This aligns with our ongoing efforts to mitigate global economic challenges through various empowerment programs. Today serves as a reminder of the urgent need to accelerate gender equality in all aspects of life.

“Investing in women accelerates progress. Governor Oyebanji’s shared prosperity vision prioritizes lifting women from economic challenges. His administration creates an enabling environment for women to thrive, fulfilling our shared commitment to gender equality.”

The Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Mrs. Peju Babafemi, said the theme for this year’s celebration speaks to the human capital development pillar of the Oyebanji Administration, which provides an enabling space for women and girls to thrive.

According to her, “Today’s celebration is unique; it reflects the passion of His Excellency, Biodun Abayomi Oyebanji and his wife for the well-being of the people, particularly our women. Our key activity is the distribution of food items to our women from the various Local Government Areas and LCDAs. This gesture is at the instance of our compassionate Governor and wife, who prioritize the well-being of our women and their families over and above other considerations.

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“The theme for this year’s celebration, “Count Her in: Accelerating Gender Equality Through Economic Empowerment,” is apt; it speaks to the Human Capital Development Pillar of the Oyebanji administration. This agenda is an inclusive development strategy, providing an enabling space for our girls and women to thrive and develop their potential. We are grateful to Mr. Governor for investing in inclusive developmental programs for our girls and giving ample opportunities to our women to occupy leadership positions at all levels.”

The Director-General Office of Civic Orientation and Citizenship, Mrs. Olawumi Famuyiwa, said women need to work harder on their children and curb the get-rich-quick syndrome and inculcate in them the values of integrity, hard work, honesty, and industry.

“As we reflect on this year’s International Women’s Day theme, let us commit to taking concrete actions to accelerate gender equity through economic empowerment. Together, let us strive to build a future where every woman and girl in Ekiti State can fulfill her potential, pursue her dreams, and contribute her talents to the advancement of our society,” she said.

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