250 Nigerian girls undergo BEMORE training
By Mary Agidi
As the 2019 BEMORE Summer Bootcamp for Girls Naija programme commences, no fewer than 250 girls cut across the country are currently undergoing training in life-changing skills at the Public Service Training Institute, PSTI, Ilara-Mokin in Ifedore Local Government area of Ondo State.
The Summer BEMORE Bootcamp, an initiative of the wife of the State Governor, Mrs. Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, is the third edition less than three years of the current administration in the state.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Mrs. Akeredolu revealed that aside the 2019 BEMORE girls, 750 have been trained so far in skills ranging from solar energy generation, Information Communication Technology, among others.
According to her, considering the spate at which female folks were being molested recently, including minors, an arrangement had been made to equip the 2019 BEMORE class with Taekwondo skills to defend themselves against rapists and molesters.
She emphasized the essence of the Summer Bootcamp to raise the generation of females who will change the narrative about womenfolk, and create a world where both genders were given balance recognition.
She noted that women and girls were endangered species in this side of the world, hence the need to design an intervention that would serve as self-defence against molestation.
Mrs. Akeredolu who expressed displeasure over the recent incessant rape cases involving underage girls, reiterated her determination to fighting the scourge till it became a thing of the past in the state.
She charged the newly inducted BEMORE girls to forget all the limiting ideologies the society had taught them, including the superstitious cultural norms about female folks, but exert all their energies to the two weeks training with the vision of influencing the society positively later.
Earlier, the State Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social development, Mrs. Titi Adeyemi in her welcome address, stated that the initiative which came to existence two years ago had come to stay, describing it as a globally recognized programme.
Also speaking, the Olowa of Igbara-Oke, Oba Adefarakanmi Agbede, lauded the initiative, stating that Ondo State is fortunate to have a passionate first lady who is committed to raising women of virtues.
The Monarch who is also the Chairman of the Ifedore Council of Obas, assured the Governor’s wife of the support of other monarchs in the local government for the Akeredolu-led administration.
The Chairman, Ondo State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission, (OSOPADEC), Mr. Gbenga Edema who commended Mrs Akeredolu for the initiative noted that the best legacy one could leave behind is investment in human beings.
Edema, whose commission sponsored a large number of girls from Ilaje and Ese-Odo local government areas of the state, assured of more participants in the year 2020 edition.
Stakeholders at the opening ceremony include Renewable Energy Association of Nigeria, REAN; Solar Sister Nigeria, United Bank of Africa, Lolo Talks Inc, government officials, Local Government chairmen in Ondo State, representative of Ekiti state government, FOWOSO family, traditional rulers, among others.