Edo State Government through the Ministry of Social Development and Gender Issues in collaboration with GIZ commemorated the 2024 annual International Women’s Day with a two-day skills enhancement activity.

Welcoming the women at the John Odigie Oyegun Public Service Academy (JOOSPA) in Benin City, the Commissioner for Social Development and Gender Issues, Hon. Christabel Omoh Ekwu encouraged the women to be responsible and productive as it is the only way to eliminate poverty.

The commissioner also disclosed the state government’s commitment to women, hence the need for various empowerment programmes and implementation of policies favourable to women and the girl child.

“We have a governor that listens to your voice; a governor that has put in place legacies that will forever remain, even in the generation to come, some of which are, the Gender Policy, the VAPP Law, to mention a few,” she said.

Hon. Christabel Omoh Ekwu, Commissioner for Social Development and Gender Issues(centre) in company of participants during the International women’s Day 2024 celebration in Benin City

Hon Omoh Ekwu explained that International Women’s Day is a day set aside for women all over the world to celebrate womanhood, adding “It is a day that women raise their voices to campaign for inclusiveness and gender equality, encouraging women to keep up in aspiring for inclusiveness,” she added.

She further enlightened the women on the need for proper parenting, as it gives birth to a sane society free of crime and an irresponsible generation.

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Talking on the theme for International Women’s Day 2024, “Inspire Inclusion”, the commissioner noted that, when others are inspired to understand and value women inclusion, a better world would be formed, adding that when women themselves are inspired to be included, there would be a sense of belonging, relevance, and empowerment.

On her part, Joy Jubril, a beneficiary of the training and empowerment programme, from Etsako West Local Government Area lauded the Obaseki-led administration for its inclusiveness of women in governance, noting that the present administration has always involved women capacity building in its developmental plans.

She also encouraged the coming administrations to continue with foundations built by the current administration.

The highlight of the ceremony was the training of over two hundred (200) persons from the eighteen local government areas of Edo State. The women were trained on financial literacy and empowerment of womanhood with Point of Sale(POS) machines and start-up cash provided for their empowerment.