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By Suleiman Haruna
Wife of the President, Dr. Mrs. Aisha Muhammadu Buhari has pledged to continue championing the cause of women and children. She made the pledge during an event to mark the 3rd anniversary of the Future Assured Programme at the Banquet Hall of the State House on Saturday 27th October, 2018.
Mrs. Buhari was happy that the programme has made such giant strides in such a short time, and thanked partners that have made it possible.
She spoke of the programme’s engagement in addressing the deteriorating health status of women, youth and children, working to reduce the rate of maternal, neonatal and child mortality. She quoted nutrition, lack of health education, lack of clean drinking water and poverty as the culprits; leading the programme to provide clean drinking water, nutrition supplements and health screening exercises against killer diseases like breast and cervical cancer, diabetes, kidney disease and hypertension in many parts of the country. She also spoke of interventions in deworming children.
Speaking on the programme’s involvement in empowerment, Mrs. Buhari said poverty had to be tackled through deliberate programmes to develop entrepreneurial skills and provide women and youth with working tools. She mentioned rice mills, fish dryers, and groundnut extruders as well as grinding mills, sewing machines, rickshaws and spaghetti makers. Mrs. Buhari also spoke on the effort of the programme in the protection of human rights of women and children against abuse, violence and rape as well as supporting surgeries and advocacy on conditions like intersex and hydrocephalus.
Mrs. Buhari said the event recognizes that many Nigerians “are working to change lives like the programme is doing and need to be emulated. Some of those recognized and honoured include DCP Abba Kyari, a police officer, for uncommon dedication to duty, Ruona Meyer, a journalist for producing a documentary on Codeine, leading to its ban, Tobore Ovuorie, for her report on human trafficking. Corporate organizations like FlexiSAF Foundation were also honoured for innovation and social service.
Goodwill messages were delivered by the Federal Ministry of Health, UNFPA and Friesland Campina.
Highlights of the event were the cutting of the birthday cake and unveiling of the Future Assured Magazine as well as a platform to promote youth creativity.
The event was attended by wife of the Vice President, Mrs. Dolapo Osinbajo, government officials, wives of State Governors and members of the Diplomatic Corp.
Suleiman Haruna is the Director of Information to Wife of the President State House, Abuja