By Kehinde Ayantunji
The Southern Governors’ Wives Forum (SGWF) have pledged more commitment to eradicate poverty and encourage girl child education through their various pet projects in the 17 southern Nigeria states.
The forum at its 2018 quarterly meeting held in Osogbo described poverty and illiteracy as major prominent challenges that encourage girl child abuse and inferiority complex in the society.
Vice Chairman of the forum, and the wife of the Governor, state of Osun, Mrs Sherifat Aregbesola said this while playing host to the Southern Governors’ wives in Osogbo.
Mrs Aregbesola in her address described the meeting as a further step to provide another step to drive the desire for progress, sustainable development and unity among the southern states of Nigeria.
According to the first lady, the country is yearning for critical re-engineering in all facets of life and no effort must be spare to make life more abundant for the people while urging the wives of the governor not to relent in their efforts.
She said “As members of SWGF, we have been contributing individually and collectively to meeting this goal. During our meetings, we have continually deliberated on various ways we can intervene to ensure that our people especially women, have improved standard of living across our state.”
“It is particularly noteworthy that our empowerment programme which has become part of our regular meetings has touched many lives. It is fast becoming a special scheme in addition to our individual empowerment programmes in our states, I appreciate your commitments, you must not relent and this is one of the cardinal aim of initiating this forum by the Wife of the President, Aisha Buhari”.
Delivering a lecture on the “Role of the Wife of the Public Officer”, the wife of the Governor, Enugu State, Monica Uguwanyi urged the wife of public office holders to be accommodating and polite in their public engagements, saying their public appearance most often used to rate their husband.
She said “ Our image outside is the public perception of our husband, many develop hatred for people in public offices just because of the public and private conduct of their wives, the way we dress, talk and relate with people are very important, it would be used as the standard to support your husband.”
“We are not the one elected as governor or senator, we are their wives, we must know our limit in intervene in political and public affairs that is not within our purview, our posture can positively or negatively affects the success and rating of our husband, therefore we are under obligation to behave responsibly” .
The wife of the Delta State Governor, Mrs Dame Edith Okowa in her lecture urged women to always ensure that their husband are emotionally stable through proper management of home and other domestic affairs.
Edith said “As Africans, our husbands deserve respect and caring to appropriately discharge their responsibility in public office, even if you are the one providing foods at home, you have duty to respect your husband and never allow communication gap”.
“It has been proven more often that those who have perfect home would be stable emotionally and perform at maximum level either at work place or public office, it is therefore expected of us to organize our home to save the family and the society at large.”
Other wives of the southern governors’ in attendance includes Lagos State, Mrs Bolanle Ambode; Rivers State, Justice Eberechi Wike, Ogun, Olufunso Amosun; Edo, Mrs Bene Obaseki; Oyo Mrs Folrance Ajimonbi; Ekiti, Feyisetan Foyose; Bayelsa, Dr Racheal Dickson and Abia, Mrs Nkechi Ikpeazu.
The forum had earlier paid a courtesy visit to the state governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola at the government house who advised them to use their forum in addressing economic, political and educational challenges facing the country.