Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode on Friday urged women to rise above all forms of discrimination and ‘weaker sex’ tag and truly play their role as change agents, saying such was necessary to transform Nigeria starting from the family unit.
Speaking at the closing ceremony of the 2018 National Women’s Summit of Oyo State Officials’ Wives Association (OYSOWA) held at University of Ibadan Conference Centre, Governor Ambode said it was important for the Nigerian women to recognize the fact that the world was changing, and that they must use their influence to bring about positive change that would in turn cascade into every strata of the society.
According to the Governor, “The world is changing everyday and women are now in the forefront of things. Women are now agents of change and are no longer referred to as the “weaker sex”.
“So, they must never see themselves as oppressed or discriminated against. Every woman can be an agent of change. The society is built on a small unit called the family where the woman has great influence.
“From the family unit, every woman can initiate or spark change which can cascade upwards to every level and every sector of the nation. With focus, determination and perseverance, you can transform yourselves, your families, your communities and our country, against all odds,” he said.
Governor Ambode, who described the theme of the summit – ‘Against All Odds’, as apt, said it was important for women to appreciate the fact that it is possible for one to attain any goal despite challenges.
“There will always be odds facing us; odds against our aspirations, our dreams, our objectives. But we cannot use these as excuses. The world we live in today does not take excuses. The world does not recognize efforts but results. So, against all odds, we must push forward, with a strong desire, and determination to succeed.
“I know our women face a lot of odds. Different, difficult challenges come your way every day. But my message to you today; and I am sure that is the message of this Summit, is that you can overcome all the challenges and triumph in all your endeavours,” Governor Ambode said.
He particularly urged participants at the summit to take practical steps to apply the lessons learnt from the very enlightening, engaging and inspiring sessions, saying the success of the conference largely depended on their individual abilities to translate the values gained positively, starting from their respective homes and families, to the larger society.
“At this critical period of our nationhood, your ability to adapt yourself to the current challenges will inevitably transform our society,” he added.
Besides, Governor Ambode commended the convener of the summit and wife of Oyo State Governor, Mrs. Florence Ajimobi, saying it was on record that many lives have been positively transformed in all communities in the State through the OYSOWA initiative.
In his remarks earlier, Oyo State Governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi commended Governor Ambode for bringing pivotal professional into governance, saying being a professional all his life, the Governor of Lagos had exemplified such in his dealings.
He also commended women in the State for standing by their husbands against all odds.