•Daughter, Dr. Tokunbo Awolowo -Dosunmu, Explains
On Monday, November 26, 2018. Ambassador (Dr) Tokunbo Awolowo Dosunmu, one of the daughters of the late sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, played host to a lot of women in Lagos. She held the 2nd Annual Lecture, of HID Awolowo Foundation, a movement she founded last year to Inspire and Empower total women.
With this year’s theme: Nigeria Women and Leadership: Challenges & Prospects, that held at Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, on V.I, Lagos, the venue couldn’t contain all the women who stormed the event .
How do we describe a gathering that had Mrs. Ibukun Awosika, Chairman, First Bank of Nigeria, as the Keynote Speaker; Senator Kofoworola Bucknor-Akerele, Mrs. Nkiru Okpareke and Ms. Ada Osakwe as discussants, while Senator Daisy Danjuma was Chairman of the day. It was an eye-opening event. Surely the convener, Ambassador (Dr.) Awolowo Dosunmu deserves accolades.
HID Awolowo Foundation was first unveiled in 2016. The convener, Ambassador (Dr) Olatokunbo Awolowo explained that following Yeye Oodua, HID Awolowo’s demise, she decided to do something to keep her memory alive.
“Our reasons for this are simple. First of all, given her remarkable life, she deserves all the recognition that could come her way.
“Second, here we have, clearly, a ‘team made in heaven’. Chief Awolowo was the visionary and leader of the team. And Yeye Oodua HID Awolowo was his incomparable enabler and enhancer. Together, they braved phenomenal challenges and today, the consensus of opinion is that they won, ultimately. Admittedly, today’s complex and cynical world of constantly shifting alliances makes the temptation to despair almost irretrierably. .
“Nevertheless, the lives of both the sage and his ‘jewel of inestimable value’ hold so many lessons for posterity. Since today is about Papa honouring Mama through his legacy institution, so to say, we will restrict ourselves to talking about her. Her loyalty and dedication to spouse and family, even and especially in the face of severe trials; her perseverance in the struggle for the supremacy of truth and social justice; her extraordinary industry and entrepreneurship; and her indomitable spirit in the face of formidable odds. She was strong, she was smart and she was kind.
These are attributes that should be acclaimed and celebrated even more now than ever before, even if evidence all around us appears to suggest that it is no longer enough to possess such”
Mrs. Awosika, on her part said there was the need to create an enabling environment for women to thrive in the society. “Culture is not the reason for gender limitation. I have always looked at our environment and wondered which culture limits women from achieving greater things. History has taught us that a lot of women did wonders during the pre-colonial era when you think of what Moremi did in Ife. Queen Amina of Zaria, Queen Kambasa of Bonny. What they represented not to talk of what women who ruled male-dominated societies did.
Marriage should not also be a limitation for women to achieve greater things for themselves and for the society. If we don’t create an environment that allows a woman to express herself, we lose as a nation. We lose the inherent values that women carry. We have more than enough competent women to take leadership positions in the country.
Every woman must also deliver when she found herself in leadership positions because the whole world would be waiting to see if she would do anything differently when she assumed leadership position.
SENATOR DAISY DANJUMA CHARGE TO MEN
Senator Daisy Danjuma is the Chairman of the occasion. In her opening remarks, she charged all men to support their wives and daughters, that it is their duty to see that their daughters and wives grow by training them and giving them the opportunity to succeed. She said: “Mama HID Awolowo succeeded because her husband gave her the needed support and I am also a good example because my husband encouraged me to go into politics and I became a Senator in a very conservative area that has hitherto been dominated by men.
SEN. KOFOWOROLA SPOKE
Among the discussants was a former Deputy Governor of Lagos State, Senator Kofoworola Bucknor-Akerele.
She said most Nigerian women were brought up to believe that their main role in life was that of a mother. In her speech, she said: “Majority of men do not believe that the feminine gender has a place in politics. Some women who ventured into politics were often seen as promiscuous by the Nigerian society and this stigma has served as a deterrant to many women who may wish to pursue a political career. They are often patronising and sometimes outright aggressive towards women politicians.
However, there are a few enlightened men who are supportive of women politicians.
Oni’s New Wife Dazzles
Ooni of Ife’s new wife, Oloori Moronike Naomi Silekunola Ogunwusi, was also at the event with her entourage. She was invited to the podium and also spoke on the roles of women in society today and many challenges women are facing and why they must not be discouraged.
PA ADEBANJO’S SUPPORT
Afenifere Chieftain Chief Ayo Adebanjo, was at the gathering, HID Awolowo Foundation 2nd Annual Lecture, to support the Convener, Ambassador (Dr.) Olatokunbo Awolowo Dosumu.
After the panel discursion that lasted for about 1 hour. It was time for questions and answers which many people saw as an opportunity to pour out their minds and also to contribute to what the discussants had said so far. The goodwill messages followed and the vote of thanks was given by Mrs. Folusho Olaniyan.