*Governor greets Afe Babalola at 93
Victor Ogunje in Ado Ekiti
The Minister of Women Affairs, Mrs. Pauline Tallen has commended the Ekiti State Governor, Biodun Oyebanji for exhibiting signs that he would promote gender balancing in government with appointments of women into strategic positions.
Tallen lauded Ekiti State Government’s contributions in women-related issues particularly its Gender-based Violence Law, which she said had been quite effective in curbing domestic and sexual abuses.
The minister, who spoke while playing host to Oyebanji at the weekend, said Ekiti women have the capacity to excel in any position of responsibility, urging the governor to support them and tap their unique abilities.
The minister disclosed that about N3 billion had been earmarked by Nigeria for Women Project, adding that the largesse would spread to all states of the Federation.
Tallen assured the governor of necessary support for the state, saying: “I know you will continue the good work of your predecessor and do more. You already have a woman as deputy governor and a woman as SSG, that is a good way to start.
“Kwara State has the record as the state with highest number of women in government. Try and surpass Kwara State in this regard.”
In his submission, Oyebanji said his administration would exceed the 35 per cent representation for women in elective and appointive positions, in line with the equal opportunity policy of the state government.
He said the meeting was part of his visit to Federal Ministries, Departments, and Agencies as well as Development Partners in the country.
The governor said gender balance and women related issues were part of his government’s working plans adding that his administration had started well with the choice of a woman as the State Deputy Governor and another as Secretary to the State Government.
According to Oyebanji, women have ability to see things far ahead and decern things much better than men.
He commended the achievements recorded in the area of women development by former Governor Kayode Fayemi and his wife, Bisi Fayemi, promising to build on the records especially gender mainstreaming and affirmation.
Meanwhile, Oyebanji, has congratulated the founder, Afe Babalola University (ABUAD), Chief Afe Babalola, as he marked his birthday yesterday, describing him as a blessing to humanity.
Oyebanji, in a goodwill message signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Yinka Oyebode, in Ado-Ekiti, yesterday, congratulated Babalola for witnessing another year in good health and excellent spirit.
Oyebanji described Babalola as a man who is truly blessed by God, who also devotes his time, energy and resources to improving the lives of many as well as bringing development to Ekiti State in particular and Nigeria in general.
The governor commended Babalola’s giant strides in the fields of education, medicine, agriculture and law and saluted his visionary leadership, patriotism and generosity of spirit, which made him a father figure to many.
“Baba Afe is not only blessed, he has deployed his God- given talents, knowledge and resources to improve the lives of many as well as bring development to our dear State and Nigeria in general.
“On behalf of the government and good people of Ekiti State, I join other numerous admirers across the world to celebrate our highly revered leader on his special day and pray for God’s protection, divine health and nourishment as he continues to serve humanity,” the governor added.