As Nigeria joined the rest of the world in celebrating International Widows’ Day, the Wife of the Oyo State Governor, Mrs Tamunominini Makinde, has assured widows in the state that the Seyi Makinde-led administration would continue to prioritize their welfare, creating an enabling environment for them to strive.
She stated this in Ibadan, the capital of Oyo state on Tuesday at an event organized to commemorate International Widows’ Day, which is being celebrated June 23.
The theme for the 2023 Widows’ Day is “Innovation and Technology for Gender Equality.”
Makinde emphasized the importance of appreciating all widows and recognizing the challenges they face in life, such as social inclusion and economic vulnerabilities.
“Every widow is faced with the challenge of social inclusion and economic vulnerabilities which makes life difficult for them,” she said.
Speaking about the need for gender equality, she emphasized the need for action to achieve full rights and recognition for widows.
“Our widows must have access to all their benefits, which includes providing them with information on access to a fair share of their inheritance, productive resources; pensions and social protection that are not based on marital status alone; decent work and equal pay; and education and training opportunities,” she stated.
While calling on stakeholders, particularly women advocacy groups, to support and defend widows and their dependents in their communities, Mrs. Makinde highlighted the initiatives undertaken by the Seyi Makinde government to support widows across the 33 local government areas of the state, such as paying their JAMB fees and providing financial aid.
She empathized with the widows, describing the difficulties faced by some of them as palpable. She announced plans to promote innovation and technology among widows to combat gender inequality.
“We must deliberately set the stage for the acquisition of innovative digital technology for our women and expose our women to financial literacy. Hence, we are going to promote innovation among you our widows and seek solutions to defeat challenges encountered by widows. We are going to empower widows with computer literacy and digital platforms to help them. We are going to train widows with the use of computers and POS machines, so as to help establish them” she said.
The Head of Service in Oyo state, Mrs. Olubumni Oni, also addressed the widows, urging them to live a prayerful life and continue to be useful to society.
In response, Mrs. Dorcas Adesanya speaking on behalf of the widows, commended the First Lady for identifying with them and assured her that they would also support her in her role as the mother of the state.
The event also witnessed presentation of money, gift and food items to the widows present at the occasion.
Present at the event includes notable figures as Mrs. Bose Adedibu, the PDP Southwest Women Leader, Mrs. Grace Oderinde, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Women Affairs, among others.