By Njamanze Fidel
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) gubernatorial aspirant in Delta State, Dr. Ngozi Olejeme has urged Nigerian politicians to emulate the noble ideals and legacies of the Rt. Hon. Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe.
Olejeme who was the special guest of honour at the 18th Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe Commemorative Event in Lagos extolled the rare virtues of the late leader, describing him as an initiator of women in political leadership roles in Nigeria.
“Dr. Azikiwe who was a leader on the continent of Africa, appeals to so many people in so many ways. To some, he is being remembered on his dogged fight for freedom from the colonial and imperialist rules. To others, he was a world vanguard of human rights, dignity and respect. However for me, Dr. Azikiwe was a true nationalist, a detribalized Nigerian, an initiator of women in political leadership roles in Nigeria and one of the few politicians who believe that politics is essentially for service,” she said.
Explaining, Olejeme said Dr. Azikiwe believed in the politics of compromise and the liberation of womanhood.
“History attests to the fact that Dr. Azikiwe under the leadership of the National Council of Nigerian Citizens (NCNC) in 1953 nominated the first set of women into leadership positions, namely: Mrs. Janet Mokelu, Chief (Mrs) Olufunmilayo Ransome Kuti and Chief Mrs Margaret Ekpo, all of blessed memories. Azikiwe worked tirelessly to ensure their victories at the poll. He also permitted the office of the First Lady which was honorably occupied by Mrs. Flora Chinwe Azikiwe as the First Nigerian First Lady,” she recalled.
Recalling the age-old belief in the importance of women in our society, Olejeme said the role of women in the society should not be limited but that all human should be encouraged to serve their societies accordingly to their gifts and capacities, regardless of their gender.
“When women are empowered, the resultant facts are that our children are empowered to face their world, our families are entrenched and flourishes like a tree planted by the riverside, our societies stand out with pride in the community of states and nations,” she explained.
Olejeme who described her gubernatorial bid as the people’s desire for development, appealed to politicians to allow the life and times of the Great Zik of Africa to guide their steps in enthroning women in leadership roles.
“In Trust Fund Pensions Plc, Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund, NSITF, Ajaokuta Steel Company Ltd, Subsidy Re-investment and Empowerment programme (SURE-P) and others, I excelled tremendously to the delight of Nigerians. I demonstrated sheer commitment, honesty and managerial competence. I touched lives of Nigerians, particularly Deltans. I added values to the lives and livelihoods of the underprivileged and widows. I also equipped Nigerian youths with viable skills and employment,” she said.
Continuing, she stated that, “I therefore call on all noble minded citizens of our great country, our beloved president, governors and all leaders to lend tacit support in the task of enthroning our women in leadership positions in 2015. I urge you all to support me”.
Olejeme who also donated N2 million naira to the Ndi-Igbo Cultural Society of Nigeria urged Nigerians to support President Goodluck Jonathan to enable him continue his laudable programmes and women empowerment.
“Mr. President has done a lot for the country. He deserves our support. He deserves a second term,” she added.