… As Ministry empowers over 100, 000 Lagosians
The Lagos State Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation has said that the several training and empowerment programmes it had embarked upon in the last two years have further placed the Government on the path of reducing poverty to the barest minimum in the State.
Addressing members of the press today at the 2017 edition of the yearly Ministerial Press Briefing to commemorate the second year in office of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode as well as celebrate Lagos State and its achievement in the last 50 years, the Commissioner for Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Hon. Lola Akande said that the various empowerment programmes and poverty alleviation initiatives of the present administration have beneficiaries among youths, women, widows, physically challenged persons and several others.
Akande added that the present administration believes that if residents of the State are productively engaged and empowered in productive ventures, the dependence on government for the provision of some basic needs would reduce and on the long run increase self-esteem of the citizenry.
She said: “The massive investment in training and empowerment initiatives is in line with the promise of Governor Ambode-led administration to run an all-inclusive government, empower the populace and also improve the standard of living of Lagosians”.
“In recognition of the contribution of the Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation to the plight of Women in Nigeria, WAPA emerged Voice of Women (VOW) 2016 Best Government Organization/Agency Supporting Women and their Families at the 2016 VOW Awards organized by WFM 91.6 last year” she stated.
The Commissioner also disclosed that the Ministry is also planning a mega empowerment programme this year and other agencies of government are also corroborating the efforts of the Ministry through training, empowerment and offering of permanent employment opportunities, saying that, “All these put together would not only reduce domestic vices but will generally address restiveness and insecurity issues emanating from idleness across the State.”
“In addition to this, a 3-week training acquisition programme was also organized for 150 people living with HIV/AIDS, to give them a sense of belonging. WAPA also enhanced the well-being of over 40, 000 vulnerable women in collaboration with the Dangote Foundation, organised a 4-week skill acquisition training programme for over 300 widows, trained over 3000 out-of- school girls and also empowered over 131 teenagers and women among other skills acquisition initiatives” the Commissioner added.
Explaining the transparent nature of selecting the beneficiaries of various empowerment programmes by WAPA, the Commissioner said that the Ministry gives equal representation to all the Local Governments and Local Council Development Areas as well as necessary organized groups.
She used the occasion to solicit for the cooperation of members of the public to report to the Ministry any person who demands money from any prospective applicant to any of the government-owned skills acquisition centres across the State.
Akande also urged men who are being abused by the women folk to approach the Ministry and report such abuse, adding that all the abuse cases received in the last two years mainly came from women but noted that abuse is no respecter of gender.