Women Empowerment: FG distributes 387 items in 13 States


By Palma Ileye

Pursuant to renewed efforts to ensure improved entrepreneurship and sustainable empowerment of Nigerian women, the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs has distributed about 387 items in 13 States of the Federation in the first phase of its initiative to scale up the socio-economic status of women and the vulnerable especially in the rural areas.

This is contained in a press release issued by Ohaeri Osondu Joseph, Special Assistant, Media to the Minister of Women Affairs.

According to the Minister of Women Affairs, Barr Uju Kennedy Ohanenye, the first phase of the distribution which was coming on the heels of recent launch of an E-Market portal for women, witnessed the distribution of Garri processing and frying machines, industrial sewing machines, industrial button hole holding machines, heavy industrial irons, Tapping machines, Steam pressing machines, Sewing machines for stretches and stitches, Cloth cutting machines, Fish smoking machines, 60,000 litres Fish rearing buckets and Rice Milling Machines.

Kennedy-Ohanenye said that “For the first phase, we have distributed these items to Anambra, Kano, Rivers, Imo, Lagos, Oyo, Katsina, Gombe, Kebbi, Adamawa, Ebonyi, Niger, Bayelsa, Benue and Jigawa states and have drawn out modalities for the next tranche of empowerment in other states and the idea is in fulfillment of my pronouncement in August last year on resumption of duty to change the narratives on empowerment of women in Nigeria.”

Speaking further, “It is obvious that our strategies towards improving the living condition of our women in the past has not yielded positive impact as most of our women especially in the rural areas are still in abject poverty. Our President is very emphatic about allowing the poor to breathe to provide a level ground for all Nigerians especially for women and the vulnerable because women and children are the major constituents of our population hence the need to place them on the front burner in the scheme of things,” she explained.

She added that the Ministry has resolved to introduce women to skill acquisition training programs on rice and fish farming, tailoring and other business ventures, saying that, “We had to partner with a Chinese firm in Abuja last year to train participants from seven (7) States on Rice farming and processing in addition to other training programs aimed at building the capacity of women on various business ventures.

“Part of the initiatives is to formally commission and hand over the distributed items to the Governors of the benefiting states and also build stronger collaborations to scale up women empowerment in such States.”

The Minister also stated that the National Headquarters was working in tandem with State Commissioners for Women Affairs and Council of Traditional Rulers to ensure transparency, proper coordination and implementation of on-going distribution of the empowerment items across the various States.