Mr Jimi Odimayo, an All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship aspirant in Ondo State, has condemned the use of women as mere campaign tools by politicians.
Odimayo stated this while speaking at a stakeholders’ meeting on Sunday in Akure, with more than 5,000 women in attendance.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the women consisted of APC women leaders in all the 203 wards in the state and various women groups and coordinators from all the 18 local government areas of the state.
Odimayo promised that if picked by the party as its candidate and he won the election, he would make women vital tools and agents of transformation.
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“We are going to ensure real poverty eradication programmes and empowerments for women.
“Women will take a large portion of representation when forming our cabinet and other important sections of the administration and governance.
“So, the practice of using women as only campaign tools has to be stopped by allowing them to take very important roles that would assist our quest to make life better for our people,” he said.
The governorship aspirant said that there would be drastic reduction in the tuition fees currently being paid by students in the two state-owned universities if elected as the next governor of the state.
According to him, parents and guardians are facing serious hardship over the payment of their children and wards’ school fees in the two institutions.
He decried situations whereby students would be paying as much as N250, 000 per academic session, stressing that “it remains the responsibility of any people-oriented government to fund education.
“I am not going to agree with the excuse of the present administration for the increase in tuition fees.
“Students are on daily basis withdrawing from our universities, owing to the exorbitant fees payable in those institutions,’’ he said.
The politician added that university education would be made compulsory for every youth in the state, as a tool to accelerate rapid development in all sections of human endeavours.
“This is why it has become necessary to increase the budgetary allocation to the education sector, in line with the UNESCO recommendation rather than shifting huge financial burden on the people.
“That is why my first pronouncement as the elected governor on Feb. 24, 2021 will be the announcement of free education for both primary and secondary schools in the state.
“We will reduce tuition fees at both Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba-Akoko and Ondo State University of Science and Technology, Okitipupa to N30,000 I’m sworn in as the elected governor of the state,’’ Odimayo pledged.
In her remarks, Mrs Folake Omojuba, who led the women groups to the meeting, assured the governorship aspirant of total support of all APC women across the 18 council areas of the state.
She commended Odimayo for his love for the womenfolk, through his empowerment programmes over the years and his promise to reduce tuition fees.
According to her, the pledged tuition fee reduction will go a long way in relieving parents and guardians of the hardship they are currently facing.
She added that kind-heartedness, good gestures to the poor, high moral values, youthfulness and genuine interest of the aspirant to serve the people of the state attracted the women to him.
“Right from this moment, all the APC women in the state have resolved to shift all our attention, energy, time, support and prayers to Odimayo. All these will, by God’s grace, come into fruition by February 2021.
“We are going to take our campaigns to the markets, churches, mosques, town meetings, clubs meetings, our families and every of our daily engagements as wives, mothers, civil servants, businesswomen and traders.
“This is our project, and we are going to diligently, faithfully and, with all the powers vested on us as women by God, pursue the project until Odimayo is sworn in as our next governor,’’ she said.
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