Mrs Titi Adeyemi, the Hon. Commissioner for Women Affairs and formerly Senior Special Adviser on Women affairs in Ondo State also retired as a Permanent Secretary in the state, she represented Her Excellency Mrs. Betty Anyanwu Akeredolu at the second edition of Nigerian women Digital Summit at The Oriental Hotel Lagos on Friday. In this interview with CYRIACUS NNAJI, Mrs. Adeyemi spoke on the great work of the First Lady in her state. Excerpts:
Tell us what Her Excellency, Mrs. Betty Anyanwu Akeredolu, wife of the Executive Governor of Ondo has been doing in terms of helping the girl child
Mrs. Akeredolu is a unique person; she is a first lady with a passion to make an impact. She is a first lady that believes that the girl child should not just be left at the bottom of the ladder. The girl child should be nursed; the girl child should be a centre of focus either by the government or the society and even NGOs. She has realized that the girl child has been so marginalized especially through STEM, when I say STEM, you know, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, and that is why she has that passion to ensure that the girl child is exposed to ICT and Solar Technology. Not up to six months her husband assumed the leadership of Ondo state, she started an initiative called Be More empowered foundation. Through that girls have been exposed to ICT, solar technology, and so many life-impacting skills. You won’t believe that girls in Ondo State and even beyond now know how to make their own sanitary pads, because she realizes that many parents, families cannot afford these other sanitary parts. Her concentration was on girls at the grass roots. She has decided to make sure that not only are you exposed to ICT and solar, they are also exposed to initiatives that would make the girl child a total woman.
They are taught how to make soap, how to tie gele, how to do make over, beads, wigs, because the woman would always be a woman, whether you are science oriented or not, so you will be a woman, a mother in future but at the same time, you must have those skills that would make you raise your head anywhere in the world. That is her passion which she makes sure she follow since 2017.
Do you think there is need for a digital curriculum in Nigeria?
On the need for digital curriculum, she said you see the world is changing and people must move with the change. Even older generation like us must be included in the digital world, digital technology makes you to be conversant with everything about the environment, if you don’t have digital literacy you will be left behind, the right thing now is to include everybody, so that you wont be left behind, you must be a digitally compliant person. Digital world is for everybody, for the girl child, for the women, we must be included that is why having digital literacy is very important.
Your view on the Nigerian Women Digital Agenda
The event is a laudable one, I believe it should be a programme that would be held annually to create awareness that women must be in the digital world, whether you are in business, governance, in teaching, in any area of endeavour you find yourself, you must key into the digital world, so that you can know what is happening around you, so that your information may reach a mass of people. Being digitally compliant will make you very confident and relevant.
Your advice for the youth
They should see themselves as people who should toe the digital world, because if you are not digitally literate, you will be left behind, and if you are left behind, you will be in seclusion, if you are in seclusion, you will be a write off. To be in tune with emerging trends, you must be digitally compliant so that you are not left behind.