Govt pledges to empower more women

Bayelsa Government says it will pay more attention to women in its empowerment and small businesses development programmes as part of efforts to stimulate the local economy. The State Deputy Governor, Mr Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, said this on Sunday, when a delegation from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Women in Politics, Ekeremor Local Government Area, paid him a solidarity visit in Government House, Yenagoa.

A statement issued by his Senior Special Assistant on Media, Mr. Doubara Atasi, quotes the Deputy Governor as saying that the government is putting in place effective measures to commence the disbursement of soft loans to the people, particularly women.

Ewhrudjakpo said that the loan facility was targeted at promoting the development of small and medium scale businesses as well as engender agricultural production in the state. He explained that although the empowerment scheme, “Diri Boost” was conceptualised to impact Bayelsa youths and men, priority would be given to the women in recognition of the role they play in society.

The deputy governor also explained that government had transfered the responsibility of women empowerment from the Ministry of Labour, Employment and Empowerment to the Women Affairs Ministry to ensure effective and efficient coordination of issues affecting women. He said that the present administration would extend the construction work on the Sagbama- Ekeremor Road to Ekeremor Town from where the Chief Seriake Dickson’s government had stopped.

The deputy governor thanked the Ekeremor women for the visit and their continued support for the PDP and urged them to gear up for the upcoming empowerment programmes. “You know that when you empower the woman, you empower a nation because mothers are key to whatever we do. They give birth to the children and also manage their husbands.

“So, as part of what we are doing, we have started the ‘DiriBoost Programme’, which is for both our women and our youths. We are going to make sure there is dignity in labour. “And that, the era where women are brought out to dance ‘women oye’ and go back emptyhanded has passed.

“So, what we are doing now is to ensure that we provide some safe loans you (women) can use to do small scale businesses and do your farms. “As you know, agriculture is the basis of Industrial revolution.

So, we want to empower you to catalyze or jumpstart our economy through agriculture and medium-scale enterprise,” he said. Speaking earlier, the Commissioner for Transport, Mrs Grace Ekiotenne, described the visit as a demonstration of the Ekeremor women’s appreciation of the good works of the deputy governor and assured him of their continued support.

In their separate remarks, Mrs Rebecca Suowari, Mrs Julie Okenarhe and Madam Ebike Tolukoro expressed gratitude to God for the several court judgements in favour of the governor and appealed to the government to carry Ekeremor PDP women along in terms of appointments.




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