The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has urged first ladies from the Southern States of Nigeria to mount pressure on the Federal Government to subsidize food instead of petrol.
He gave the charge when he received members of the Southern Governors’ Wives Forum in Benin City on Thursday.
According to him, “Our country is going through very difficult times especially for the low income earners.
“The amount of increase in food prices particularly in the last two months has forced millions of Nigerians into hunger. Hence we must treat food security as a national priority.”
Obaseki added: “As our mothers and wives, I want to leave you one last charge. you must raise your voice to help us address this issue before it gets out of hand.
“Rather than subsidizing things like petrol, we should move these subsidies to food”.
The Governor who also received the Akwa Ibom State Governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel, assured that his administration would continue to prioritize the protection of women and girls in the State through its series of programs.
“We will continue to demonstrate the political will to support and protect young boys and girls against sexual based violence. Be rest assured that as a government, we will continue to support your efforts along this line. As a State, we have zero tolerance for sexual based violence in the State.
“Protection of rights is key to our administration as we have committed lots of resources to this. We already have a budget plan for gender-based violence (GBV) this year. We will continue to pull in resources to support the GBV centers across the 18 local government areas in Edo State,” Obaseki said, adding that he appointed eight female commissioners to demonstrate his administration’s positive disposition to inclusiveness.
“We don’t play with gender issues in Edo State. We are in line with what the SGWF represents as the group. They represent unity in Nigeria. Despite the divide in our political outlook, you continue to work very closely as if there is no divide.
“It’s significant for the unity of this country. If there is anything we need the most today, it is the unity of the country. You represent unity; you epitomize unity of Nigeria,” he added.
Members of the Southern Governors’ Wives Forum who were hosted by the wife of the Edo State Governor, Mrs. Betsy Obaseki, were the first ladies of Osun, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Abia, Ogun, Ekiti, Delta, Lagos and Oyo States.