...calls for more support for the Progenitor

By Ime Silas

A former Honorary SA to the immediate-past Governor of Akwa Ibom State on Social Development and Humanitarian Services, Dr. (Obonganwan) Ekpedeme Udom has poured encomiums on the Progenitor and Founder of Ekemini Iban Akwa Ibom, Lady (Mrs.) Edna E. D. Udeme for sustaining the empowerment programme she initiated for the women.

Obonganwan Ekpedeme who was addressing newsmen yesterday on the sidelines of the the 11th Anniversary Celebrations and Women Empowerment held at Oboetim in Nsit Ibom Local Government Area, pledged to partner with the Progenitor and sponsor of the initiative.

The former governor’s aide who is also a retired Officer of the Nigerian Correctional Centre while praising Lady Edna for bringing the women under one umbrella said it took a woman with a strength of character and special grace to initiate such a thing and sustain it for eleven years still running.

Speaking on the significance of the initiative, the Obonganwan Eduek Nsit Ibom said “To the glory of God, Ekemini Iban Akwa Ibom turned eleven this year and there is no reason I would not come to be part of this epochal celebration. One thing to note is that even the name “E’kem ini Iban” tells more. Of course, it means that the time for the women has come. The women’s time is here and truly, you could see from the activities of today that the women’s time is here.

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Therefore, to fully and effectively take advantage of this time, we need the cooperation of our husbands. That’s why as their mentor, you could hear me advise the women to love thier husbands. Just like my father used to tell me, they must love their husbands till their hearts break”.

Calling for more support for the group from public spirited individuals, Dr. Ekpedeme, herself a renowned philanthropist continued “As you know, about seventy percent of Nigerians live in the rural areas and of this rural dwellers, most of them are women. And it’s the women who do everything: take care of their husbands, take care of the children and they work hard.

So if someone, an individual is empowering the women, that is a great feat. That’s why God in His infinite mercy would bless Lady Edna for her wonderful gesture. This is an initiative she started about eleven years ago in Uyo. Somewhere along the line, God led her to bring it to Nsit Ibom where she comes from.

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“As you can see, the organization is flourishing because she has good intentions. So people like us are willing to partner with the organization in order for her to do more for more people. We have been supporting her from inception and we hope to do more this time around in order to broaden the horizon of the empowerment programme”.

Our Correspondent reported that no fewer than 250 women including 50 physically challenged were empowered with various sums and categories of money to start up or support their businesses. Of this number, about 200 beneficiaries were drawn from the 11 wards of Nsit Ibom and Uyo Chapter.