• As Ondo Bemore 2021 kicks off with over 350 girls

The Deputy Governor of Ondo State, Hon Lucky Orimisan Aiyedatiwa, and the First Lady of Ondo State, Chief (Mrs) Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, on Monday, expressed confidence in the abilities of the Bemore girls to become future female technology leaders that will change the country’s gender narrative.

In separate addresses at the Opening Ceremony of the fourth edition of Ondo State’s Bemore Summer Boot Camp, held at Ondo state Public Service Training Institute, (PSTI) Ilara-mokin, in Ifedore Local Government Area of Ondo State, they said the life-enhancing skills the girls acquire in the world-class two-week programme would enable them to become selfless and be the change agents that Nigeria direly needs.

Arabinrin Akeredolu set up the BEMORE Summer Bootcamp in 2017 to encourage empowerment of the 21st-century Nigerian girl child and womenfolk in general with the right knowledge and skill-set for impacting the society positively.

The boot camp, which has produced over 1500 alumni, trains girls in Information Communication Technology (ICT), Solar renewable energy, making of hygienic liquid products, Arts and Design, tying of headgear, cake baking, make-up, taekwondo for self-defence against abusers, aerobics, music and dance. It also builds participants’ core competencies in teamwork, problem-solving, social and leadership skills, information and communication technology, and renewable energy.

Mrs Anyanwu-Akeredolu who described the programme as a landmark achievement, attributed the successes recorded through Bemore to the willpower to impact the girl child at all cost.

She added: “This for us is a great landmark and we are happy that you all, in one way or the other, are a part of this remarkable experience. This year marks the fourth edition of BEMORE in Ondo State and the second edition of BEMORE in Imo State. Surely, we couldn’t have gotten this far without sheer resilience – a willpower to impact the girl child at all cost, and I really mean “at all cost”.

In his remarks, the Deputy Governor of Ondo State, Hon Lucky Orimisan Aiyedatiwa, said Bemore has produced its own living testimonies in its ambassadors who are already doing exploits in Web designing, renewable energy Breast Cancer Awareness.

His words: “Bemore has produced its own living testimonies in the ambassadors who are already doing exploits in Web designing, renewable energy Breast Cancer Awareness. From these testimonies, we need no better motivation. This Life- transforming, life-impacting initiative should be supported so that it can expand to accommodate more girls. I encourage the girls to take good advantage of this life-time opportunity to become better persons.”

“Girls who are educated are less likely to marry prematurely and more likely to lead healthy, productive lives. They earn higher incomes, participate in decisions that most affect them, and build better futures for themselves and their families. The training of a girl child strengthens economies and reduces inequality. It contributes to more stable, resilient societies that give all individuals – including boys and men – the opportunity to fulfil their potentials.”

Earlier, the Chairman of the event, Member of the House of Representatives, representing Akoko North East/Akoko North West Federal Constituency, Hon Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, said the Bemore project is a legacy that has come to stay and will outlive the governorship of Akeredolu.

“We must all commend the First Lady for the wonderful work she is doing by investing in Ondo State girls through the Bemore Empowered Initiative. With all that the project has achieved, it is evident that
Bemore is a legacy that has come to stay and will outlive the Akeredolu regime in Ondo State.

“I am optimistic hat the next generation of Ngozi Okonjo-Eweala and other great women will emerge from Ondo State through the instrumentality of Bemore. The onus is on some of us to ensure that the project is sustained beyond her tenure as First Lady and subsequently institutionalised.” Tunji-Ojo said.

Dignitaries are the Opening Ceremony include the Deputy Governor of Ondo State, Hon Lucky Orimisan Aiyedatiwa, State Chairman of All Progressive Congress, Engr Ade Adetimehin, Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Barr Charles Titiloye, Commissioner for Finance, Mr Wale Akinterinwa.

Others are Vice Chancellor of Adekunle Ajasin University, Professor Ebenezer Olugbenga Ige, Vice Chancellor, OAUSTECH, Professor Sunday Ogunduyile, Olori Adejumoke Adeleye, Olori Olubaka of Oka land, Hon. Mayowa Akinfolarin, Mr Jimi Odimayo, Hon. Albert Akintoye, Chairmen of local government areas, members of the Foundation for Wives of Ondo State Officials and Female political appointees, FOWOSO, present and past members of State Executive among others.

Story by Media team, office of Ondo State First Lady.