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First Lady in Abeokuta, launches “Renewed Hope Initiative” for Southwest women

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No fewer than 120 women from the six south-west states are to get N60 million from the “Renewed Hope Initiative,” a social intervention programme of the wife of the President, Mrs. Oluremi Tunubu.

The first lady disclosed this on Tuesday at the launch of the “Renewed Hope Initiative Women Agricultural Support Programme” for the Southwest and the flag-off of the 2024 Ogun State Planting Season at the Cultural Centre, Abeokuta.

She said N10 million would be given to 100 persons with disabilities to recapitalize their existing businesses.

She said: “Today, we are supporting 20 women farmers per state with the sum of N500,000 each. To this end, a draft of N10 million per state for the Southwest zone will be handed over to the first ladies of Ekiti, Lagos, Ogun, Ondo, Osun, and Oyo states, who are the Renewed Hope Initiative (RHI) state coordinators, for onward disbursement to all beneficiaries in their respective states.

“The Renewed Hope Initiative Social Investment Programme will be empowering 100 persons with disabilities and small business owners in Ogun State with a sum of N100,000 each to recapitalise their existing businesses.”

Mrs. Tinubu also disclosed that the Renewed Hope Initiative would be collaborating with the Federal Ministry of Agriculture to empower farmers, saying that 75% of the beneficiaries, who will be young female farmers and 25% young male farmers, would be specially identified, trained, and empowered under the programme.

The first lady said the pre-identified 80 women farmers in each state for the agricultural support programme would be carried along and urged women farmers to seize the opportunity to expand their agricultural ventures and contribute to local and national food production.

“In a short while, the Renewed Hope Initiative will be collaborating with the Federal Ministry of Agriculture to empower potential farmers.

“In this phase, 75% of the beneficiaries will be young female farmers, while 25% will be young male farmers. They will all be specially identified, trained, and empowered.

“I want to implore our women farmers receiving support today to seize this opportunity to expand their agricultural ventures, contribute to local and national food production, and serve as role models for others aspiring to join the agricultural sector,” she said.

Earlier in his remarks, Ogun State Governor Dapo Abiodun disclosed that his administration, through the Oko’owo Dapo scheme, has assisted over 50,000 women to grow their businesses with additional funding from the Federal Government’s Nigeria for Women Project.

Abiodun stated that the Ogun Broiler Empowerment Scheme, which currently has a total investment of about N1.5 billion, has empowered over 500 women agribusiness owners by giving day-old chicks to women and removing broilers from them every 90 days.

While noting that his administration has also launched Ibi-Dero, an initiative specifically targeted at pregnant indigent women for pre-natal delivery, post-natal, and neo-natal care free of charge, he maintained that his administration has succeeded in reducing the maternal and child mortality rates in the state.

The state helmsman noted that his administration has prioritized the welfare and empowerment of women as a result of their population, adding that his government has also implemented programmes aimed at boosting the status of women by including them in politics, governance, and economic activities, as well as providing education for girls.

Abiodun added that the Renewed Hope Initiative Women Agricultural Support Programme holds a special resonance as it mirrors the resilience and tenacity of women in the state and the South West, saying that the spirit of women is integral to driving agricultural innovation and economic growth.

Abiodun, while noting that the Renewed Hope Initiative programme symbolises the determination of his administration to uplift women farmers, fortify the agricultural framework, and align with the sustainable development goals to ensure food security and sufficiency, added that investing in women extends beyond moral obligations.

In her welcome address, the first lady and the state coordinator of the Renewed Hope Initiative (RHI) in Ogun State, Mrs. Bamidele Abiodun, noted that the initiative is to celebrate and empower women in agriculture, commending the first lady for sponsoring students with an interest in agriculture to Belarus for more studies.

She noted that supporting women in agriculture in the state would help to improve the agriculture value chain, adding that discrimination against people with disabilities would soon become a thing of the past with Senator Oluremi Tinubu’s determination to make the required difference.

In her remarks, the South West Zonal Coordinator for the Renewed Hope Initiative (RHI) and wife of the Governor of Oyo State, Mrs.Tamunominini Olufunke Makinde, noted that the support programme would assist women in agriculture, thereby improving the agriculture sector of the states, urging the beneficiaries to use the support judiciously.

 

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