By: Prince Adetayo Adekunle
On the Eight Day of March, 1957 at Creek Hospital, Lagos, a young baby boy was born into the family of Mr. Opeoluwa Osinbajo & Mrs. Olubisi Osinbajo.
The new arrival into the Osinbajo family was eventually christened Oluyemi Oluleke Osinbajo.
That young boy of Ikenne-Remo ancestry started life as a toddler, attended many institutions of learning and eventually became a Professor of Law, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Attorney General of Nigeria’s most prosperous state and eventually, the Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
In many fora, a lot has been said and written by this writer and many others about the person of His Excellency, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, GCON therefore it would amount to a tautology rehashing some of the things earlier said.
As you maybe aware, Prof Osinbajo’s birthday coincides with the International Women’s Day; a day the United Nations officially designated in 1977 as the Day solely dedicated for women’s rights and world peace. This piece, therefore, seeks to situate in prosper perspective the contributions of Prof Yemi Osinbajo to women empowerment thru the Office of the Vice President.
The contributions of Prof Yemi Osinbajo to women empowerment to the best of the knowledge of this writer includes but not limited to the following:
- INCLUSION IN GOVERNANCE:
Prof Yemi Osinbajo has facilitated the inclusion of women in governance than any other Nigerian Vice President in recent history. For the sake of emphasis, I would mention the pioneering roles of some of his female aides like Dr. Jumoke Oduwole, the ravishingly beautiful scholar from UNILAG. As PEBEC Secretary and SA Ease-of-Doing-Business, Jumoke is the brain behind the Ease of Doing Business Policy of the FG. Thru her efforts, Nigeria moved up 24 places in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Index.
This writer will also not forget the learned Mrs. Maryam Uwais who handled the Social Investments Programme, Dr. Mariam Masha who coordinated humanitarian interventions in the North East, Folusho Idumu who makes Prof’s administrative work easier, Tolani Alli from Ibadan, Oyo State who documents the erudite Professor through her lens amongst many other women in OVP. For time and space constraints, this piece cannot contain the names of other women (and there are certainly a good number of them) who are also contributing their bit to the development of Nigeria working with Prof Osinbajo.
- NATIONAL SOCIAL INVESTMENT PROGRAMMES:
Without any doubt whatsoever, Prof Yemi Osinbajo was the face of Nigeria’s National Social Investment Programmes under the current administration’s first term. Although the programme has since been moved to a Ministry for the purpose of institutionalization, nobody can take away Osinbajo’s pioneering work in this regard. Through the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP), a lot of petty traders (mostly women) benefitted from soft loans for their businesses. In the course of his supervisory role, Prof Osinbajo interacted and brought government closer to women at the grassroots.
- MENTORSHIP/ACCESSIBILITY: Prof Osinbajo is a mentor for young men and women alike. Despite his very busy schedules, he regularly provides time to interact freely with them. He is also irrevocably committed to girl child education.
In all of these, due credits must be given to President Muhammadu Buhari for granting the necessary approvals for his dependable ally, VP Yemi Osinbajo.
As Vice President Oluyemi Oluleke Osinbajo celebrates his 63rd Birthday, I wish him God’s divine blessings, mercies, favours and protections at all times.
Happy Birthday PYO!!!!
Adekunle, a public affairs analyst, writes from Ibadan, the Oyo State Capital. He can be reached via email@example.com.