The Chairperson, Bayelsa State Traditional Rulers Wives Association and President, Royal Queens of the Niger Delta Initiative, Her Majesty Dr. (Barr) Josephine Diete-Spiff has demonstrated unwavering resolve in empowering the less privileged by donating funds towards ensuring quality education for the Ogbia girl child.
The Queen of Twon Brass Kingdom made the gesture while delivering a goodwill message during a symposium organized by the Ogbia Brotherhood Women Wing on the Ogbia Girl Child Education Trust Fund and Unveiling of Assessories at the Elebele Town Hall on August 7, 2018 with the theme: “Educate A Woman, You Educate A Nation”.
The Royal Queen noted that the project is victory for the Ogbia girl child, stressing that greater vigilance and vision is required for the organizers to follow up the scholarship beneficiaries in order to achieve the primary objective of the organization.
She said females like their male counterparts have the right to education, skill acquisition, giving the right to make choices and actualising a dream, adding that encouraging female education is crucial to nation building.
“By the grace of God, I have been able to give quality educational opportunities and experience which has transformed and empowered youths to reach their potentials. This does give me the understanding and appreciation of the girl child education.
“As a child growing up in the Niger Delta, I was not fortunate to have my education paid for by my parents who were of humble background. But I didn’t give up my passion for education instead I sought for a job. So I ended up as mason assistant carrying sand and blocks in a building site in Benin City.
“So no one should give up their passion, work at it and pray always; the sky is your limit to triumph. As you are witnesses today, I am a Lawyer with a Doctorate in Business Administration and most importantly the wife of a King.
Commending the women wing of the Ogbia Brotherhood, Queen Josephine said, “Our victory today in educating the girl child should not stop in the present because it’s no guarantee of our victory tomorrow. You cannot afford to lower the standards that you have set for yourselves as an organization.
“You cannot be complacent. It is important that you follow up on the awardees of this trust fund to deliver on your promise of providing quality education for the Oghia girl child”, Queen Josephine urges.
Also, the Chairman of the occasion, Prof. Ayebemi Ibuteme Spiff said that a try at compulsory girl child education will address many other more critical issues like child and maternal mortality amidst others.
She discloses that one of the major reasons militating against the girl child education is poverty, followed closely by the culture of the Nigerian people and certain aspects of the Nigerian religion.
“With about 60% of Nigerians living in poverty, families are forced to make very difficult choices. One of such choices is to sacrifice the education of some of it’s children for the education of one who will later carry the other family members to “the promise land”; needless to say that the education of the girl child is almost always sacrificed for that of the boy child”, she lamented.