CALLING them endangered specie one may not be utterly wrong, given that violence, sexual abuse, early marriage, low access to education, gender discrimination, burden of house work and a host of others are travails mostly associated with the girl child and rural women.
Little wonder that the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 5 (SDG5) makes gender equality and empowerment of all women and girls as its focal point.
Typically,many Civil Society Organizations(CLOs),nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and others had, in the past,been in the vanguard of making cases for them ,lamenting and calling attention of government to the pains and plight.
Rather than joining this league ,watching helplessly and lamenting,an NGO is taking a bold step to change the narrative.
Accentuating the SDG 5, Global Initiative for Entrepreneurial and Capacity Development(GIECD), the NGO wing of International Centre for Leadership and Entrepreneurial Development (ICLED), teamed up with Girl Rising Foundation of New York to raise voices for the Girl Child by organizing a conference aimed at economically empowering and consequently liberating them from the shackles of poverty.
ICLED, a USA/Nigerian-based organization, has been in the centre of educating people on entrepreneurship and leadership in Nigeria.
The conference which centred on education and empowering the girl child and rural women,titled: “The Unheard Voices”, was held at the historic Centenary Hall, Ake,Abeokuta,the Ogun State capital .
Speaking at the conference,the chairman of the occasion,the Alake of Egbaland and paramount ruler of Egba kingdom,Oba Adedotun Gbadebo,stressed that empowerment of the girl child and rural women was paramount .
Represented by Chief Layi Labode,the Aare Baaroyin of Egbaland, Oba Gbadebo maintained that the girl child was very vital in an economy.
The traditional leader pointed out that if the girl child went to school and acquired skills, she would be useful to the community and the country. Saying,”It is not when you have factories you have economic growth”.
Emphasizing the need to invest in the girl child,the royal father said,
“training a girl child ,you’re training a nation”.
Stressing that production of some local produce such as Shea butter,coconut oil and others could rescue the girl child from poverty.
Oba Gbadebo lamented the plight of the girl child,saying she would be the last to take her birth and went to school late. Adding that:”The girl child takes care of the parents”.
The paramount leader lauded ICLED’s efforts,underscoring that it was an intervention to save the girl child and the councils involved from destruction.
He urged leaders in the local government councils to support ICLED’s NGO in its bid to save the girl child and rural women.
Stating that he would be happy if local councils could cooperate with the NGO to emancipate the girl child.
He said:”The NGO ( GIECD) is not only giving them fishes but teaching them how to catch to fishes.This is an opportunity for you. It is a veritable means of economic emancipation of our girls”.
In a goodwill message ,the Daranijo of Egbaland,Chief Lawrence Bankole,stressed the need for the youths to embrace vocational work,noting that white collar jobs are not available.
Delivering a keynote address, the Founder and Chairman of ICLED, Professor Olajumoke Familoni said around the world,girls face barriers to education which boys do not.
The university teacher however opined that educating girls could break the barriers of poverty
Speaking on the essence of the skills acquisition conference, the professor of Entrepreneurship and Strategy, emphasized that the participants would use the skills to add value to themselves, the community and the national economy at large.
Highlighting some produce such palm oil and others which the participants acquired training on,the Business Management lecturer said:”We don’t have to be poor in Nigeria”.
The academic who had been a manufacturer for two decades in the United States of America unequivocally said the project would be a revolution that would change the participants’ and the nation’s fortunes for good. “We are going to start something here,a revolution”, the entrepreneurship teacher reiterated .
In a remark, a digital entrepreneur, Mr. Olusoji Ajao,charged the participants on the need to embrace social media platforms with a view to networking their businesses. Saying both digital and traditional marketing channels should be used for networking and creating awareness for their products.
Eventually, the participants were split into four groups comprising cocoa,cassava,palm oil and maize categories depending on their distinct interests.
The participants, who were drawn from various local government councils and local government development areas including Obafemi-Owode, Ota, Opeji, Ofada/Mokoloke, Odeda, Ifesowapo, Abeokuta South, Abeokuta South West and Abeokuta South East, lauded the organizer, ICLED NGO.
Some of the participants who spoke to journalists expressed high expectations from the conference and training. One of them ,Mr.Olaloye Damilola,who is a cassava farmer said the training would add value to his business and subsequently improve his farm yields. Another participant,Comrade Omotosho Abiodun,a teacher,who is a cassava farmer remarked that the training would improve his life.
Similarly, Mrs.Nowoola Olabisi who is in to cocoa production said she expected that the seminar would improve her businesses and increase her earnings and the standard of living.
On her part,Mrs. Shittu Olukemi ,the Ogun State Trainer of the Nigeria Girls’ Guide Association,who led some members of the Guide to the event said the training would give a lot of opportunities to the girl child to be useful to herself and the society. Adding that the girl child would not fall victim of teenage pregnancy.
In the same vein,a Political Science graduate who is a participant,Miss Sekinat Musa,stressed that the training would enable her to be financially independent.
The most strategic segment of the programme is the unveiling of plan with different products and discussion on implementation of strategies which was anchored by an ace broadcaster,Mrs. Olaitan Bakare of Sweet FM, Abeokuta.
Ex-Oyo ALGON boss rejoices with Ibarapa-born billionaire Ayandele at 60
Former Chairman, Association of Local Governments of Nigeria )ALGON) in Oyo State, Chief Ademola Ojo has felicitated with All Progressives Congress (APC) Chieftain, Dr Olusola Ayandele as he clocked 60.
Ojo, described the Ibarapa-born billionaire as a patriot, politician and leader who have contributed to the advancement of the nation’s democracy as well as nurtured many individuals to greatness.
The ex-council gaffer states this in a statement he personally signed and made available to newsmen on Saturday in Ibadan the state capital.
Ayandele was an APC governorship aspirant in the 2019 general election and presently a senatorial hopeful.
According to the ex-ALGON Chief, the renowned businessman and philanthropist had brought great political, economic as well as social success to the state and Nigeria.
“I feel inspired and motivated most times by your doggedness, forthrightness and knack for truth at all times. You are leader worthy of emulation.
“I celebrate you my dear brother and leader. Your courage, character, wisdom, strength and simplicity stands you out always. May the Almighty fill your future with blessings, ” he said.
Also, Mr Olusola Adeleke, a Personal Assistant to Ayandele, joined to felicitate his boss whom he described as reliable, dependable and visionary boss.
He described Ayandele as a renowned businessman, philanthropist, leader and political gargantuan with uncommon sagacity.
“Your commitment and selfless service to humanity has brought tremendous development to Ibarapaland, Oyo State as well as Nigeria. You are a rare gem boss and you will forever be appreciated.
“I wish you more years of sound health, peace and glory as you celebrate. Happy birthday to my dear boss,” he submitted.
Oyo APC scribe celebrates Ayandele at 60
Caretaker Secretary of the All Progressives Congress in Oyo state, Hon. Mojeed Olaoya, has described the former gubernatorial aspirant of the party in the state, Dr. Olusola Ayandele, as a pride to Nigeria and humanity as a whole.
Olaoya remarked while celebrating the 60th birthday of the Ibarapa-born Ayandele who is a staunch player in the business and political space of the country.
In a statement issued in Ibadan on Friday and which he personally signed, Olaoya expressed his delight about Ayandele being always available to help the cause of the poor and less-privileged in the society.
“For the good people of Ibarapaland, Oyo state and Nigeria in general, the man (Olusola Ayandele) is a rare blessing and he deserves to be celebrated everyday having made a lot of difference as a businessman, politician and philanthropist for a very long time.
“As an academic and scholar, Ayandele made his indelible mark by imparting knowledge on a great population of young people. And more importantly, his positive contribution to the economy of Nigeria cannot be underestimated as he is leading investor and creator of employment opportunities of all time. To crown it all, Dr. Ayandele decided to dabble into partisan politics to enable him do more for the society and he has not disappointed his people.
“To this end, it is worthwhile to join several thousands of people globally to celebrate the enigma known as Eruobodo on this auspicious occasion of his 60th birthday anniversary as we pray God to grant him the opportunity of long life, sound health and prosperity”, the statement added.
Oyo commissioner, Olatunbosun urges citizens to disregard panic messages over ultimatum to herdsmen
Oyo State Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Dr. Wasiu Olatubosun has disclosed that citizens of the State should disregard a voice note message urging people in Ibadan to stay indoors on Friday 22nd of January due to a purported ultimatum issued by some individuals to a Fulani Community in Igangan, Ibarapa area of Oyo State.
Recall that the State governor, Engr. Seyi Makinde has warned individuals to respect the constitutional rights of any Nigerian to live anywhere in the country in a peaceful manner and condemned the said ultimatum in a state broadcast to the people of the state
A voice note, being circulated on Wednesday by one woman from London simply known as ‘Remi’ has urged residents of Ibadan to stay indoors on Friday so as to avoid any crisis that might arise from the outcome of the ultimatum issued to the Fulani Herdsmen Community in Igangan.
Olatubosun said the message was targeted at causing panic among the people and to tarnish the efforts of the present administration in tackling insecurity in the State.
He said Oyo State indigenes at home and in the diaspora ought to give support to the government and not to cause disaffection and unnecessary panic over an issue that has been adequately addressed by the government and concerned security agencies.
He added that the people of the State, especially in Ibadan should go about their businesses without fear of molestation or attack from any quarter.
“It is funny to hear that somebody was sending voice note from London, warning Ibadan people not to venture out on Friday because of an ultimatum issued to a Fulani Herdsmen Community in Igangan, in Ibarapa area.
“This is an issue that has been addressed by the government that nobody has the power to give such ultimatum, the constitution of Nigeria does not allow for it, especially when the said Community is not constituting security threat to lives and properties of the people.
“The government of Oyo State and security apparatus are working around the clock to give the people of the State the required peaceful atmosphere that will engender economic growth, we therefore urge our people, especially in Ibadan to ignore the voice note message and go about their normal businesses without fear of molestation or attack from any quarter.”
The commissioner called on the residents of the State to be wary of scaremongers who he said could create psychological crisis where such was not in existence.
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