As First Lady rolls out Humanitarian Outreach for the aged…

Abuja, Nigeria’s capital will be on a stand still, Friday December 22, 2023, as the nation’s First Lady, Her Excellency Distinguished Senator Oluremi Tinubu, is hosting a Humanitarian Outreach to the aged 65 and above.

The nation’s capital will witness vulnerable groups from the six area councils as beneficiaries of the national landmark initiative of Senator Oluremi Tinubu.

In the meantime, the Federal Capital Territory Administration, FCTA, Mandate Secretary for FCT Women Affairs Adedayo Benjamins-Laniyi, who is an avid supporter/representative Hope Initiative project is on hand to play the host. 

She is deeply involved in driving the image of the Renewed Hope Agenda in the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, as the Mandate Secretary for Women Affairs Secretariat.

Since assumption of office, she has been pursuing with vigour anything that will benefit women in FCT in tandem with the first lady’s pet project.

The first lady, however, is a lady on a mission. She came prepared and ready for the job of the first lady. She is the last of 13 children in her family, and hails from the Ikusebiala family of Ogun state. 

She was the senator representing Lagos central senatorial district at the National Assembly from 2011 to 2023. She is a member of the All Progressives Congress (APC). Mrs Tinubu is unassuming and forthright in what she wants and what she needs.

When she took over the Office the First Lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria on May 29, 2023, Senator Oluremi Tinubu knew what was at stake and what legacy she intends to leave behind after at the end of her tenure.

We need to know that Mrs Tinubu was the first lady of Lagos state from 1999 to 2007 when Mr. President was the governor of the South-west state. While in Lagos, she set the pace and template on which subsequent first ladies of the state are building and using her scope as a yardstick.

On May 29 this year, she came prepared and hit the ground running with her Renewed Hope Initiative looking out for the welfare of women, children and the vulnerable in the society.

Her pet project, the Renewed Hope Initiative, RHI, is expected, according, to Senator Oluremi Tinubu, is to impact tremendously on rural women through various empowerment intervention programmes.

According to the first lady, “Our mission is better life for families; charity work is what I have been doing. All the people can do is to trust us, and evidence abound of what we have done in the past.”

The project is to support the renewed hope project which is going to be a team work to improve the capacity of some of the vulnerable children and cater for Nigerian women and the youths.

Members of the governing board of the initiative include the first lady, wife of the Vice President and the wife of the Chief of Staff, Salamatu Gbajabiamila.

Others are the Senate President’s wife, Ekaette Akpabio, Imo governor’s wife, Chioma Uzodinma, and Dr Betta Edu, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs.

The project follows the tradition of Nigerian first ladies who set up women-focused pet projects once their husbands assume office. Immediate-past first lady Aisha Buhari ran with the Future Assured project during her husband’s reign.

Remi Tinubu said the initiative would focus on five key areas – agriculture, education, economic empowerment, health and social investment.

“Beneficiaries will register with the Corporate Affairs Commission, CAC, and open a bank account to qualify to be considered.

”We hope to take off with unspent funds from the 2023 campaign purse after which we shall solicit funds from private organisations, international donors and non-governmental organisations.

“The programme will enable us to assist the vulnerable groups; we shall try to see what we can do to naturally meet their needs.

“We shall have zonal meetings which will involve the wives of state governors,” she said.

The pet project has seen Medical/ Humanitarian Outreach for 250 aged people from age 65 above. Also, 1,709 widows and orphans of fallen heroes of the Nigerian Armed Forces have received financial support of N250,000 each courtesy of the Renewed Hope Initiative (RHI), of Nigeria’s First Lady, Oluremi Tinubu.

The support, which is in a total sum of N427,750,000, is part of the social investment programme of the Renewed Hope Initiative, designed to advance the welfare of vulnerable groups in the country.

Distinguished Senator Oluremi Tinubu called on other stakeholders to always consider the dependents of fallen heroes.

Explaining why she waded into the matter, the First Lady said: “Under the Social Investment Programme of the Renewed Hope Initiative, we are here to empower 1,709 widows with the sum of two hundred and fifty thousand naira (N250, 000) each. This will enable you to recapitalise an existing business or start a business of your choice to enable you to care for your families.

“We recognise that widows are not victims; they are survivors. You have shown extraordinary courage in the face of adversity, and we are here to offer a helping hand as you chart a new path going forward.

“Some of you have been widows for some time while some of you have just been widowed and we hope that the older widows will give emotional support to the younger ones.”

in keeping with its mandate of empowering Nigerian women with enabling skills, the Renewed Hope Initiative of the First Lady has graduated the first set of beneficiaries of its Women ICT Training and Empowerment Programme.

The training had no fewer than 35 women drawn from across the FCT.

She emphasised the importance of digital literacy and its role in fostering economic independence, noting that these skills are indispensable tools for driving growth and innovation”.

Who is Remi Tinubu? She started her educational career at Our Lady of Apostles Secondary School Ijebu-Ode where she obtained her West African Senior Secondary School Certificate (WASSC) in 1979, and PGD from the Redeemed Christian bible college in 2010.

Tinubu received a BSc in Education from the University of Ife and a National Certificate of Education in Botany and Zoology from the Adeyemi College of Education.

She became the first lady of Lagos state when her husband, Bola Tinubu, was elected as governor. As first lady in Lagos state, Mrs Tinubu established the New Era Foundation, dedicated to establishing centers for “all round development of young ones and promote public awareness on environmental health and community service.

Oluremi Tinubu was one of over 100 senators elected in the 8th assembly in 2015. Six of these were women. The others were Stella Oduah and Uche Ekwunife, who both represented Anambra, Fatima Raji Rasaki, Rose Okoji Oko and Binta Garba. At the 2019 general elections, Senator Tinubu retained her senatorial seat representing Lagos Central, making it her third tenure in office,

She was listed alongside Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Tony Elumelu and other prominent people for the Eko Excellence Awards in 2019. In 2020, Mrs Tinubu called for the creation of state police as a way of tackling the rising spate of insecurity in the country.

She is a firm believer in investing in Human Capital and Her Youth Empowerment and Skill Acquisition Scheme in collaboration with Good Boys and Girls Empowerment Scheme (GBGES) has produced 1`172 beneficiaries. About 164 youths were trained on various skills and received start up kits and capital of about N40,000 each.

She is a Christian and is an ordained pastor of the Redeemed Christian Church of God. Her ordination took place in 2018 at the Old Arena of RCCG, Lagos/Ibadan Expressway where the church held its 66th annual convention themed “Dominion”. She is also Grand Matron of the Committee of Wives of Lagos State Officials (COWLSO).

We should therefore raise the glass and clink our glasses to an amiable and unassuming workaholic First Lady Of the Federal Republic Of Nigeria. 

You are welcome to Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory. 

Abdul, an Abuja-based journalist, writes via [email protected]