A member of the House of Representatives from Ibadan Northwest/Southwest Federal Constituency, Adedeji Stanley Olajide on Sunday restated his reasons for giving cash and goats as empowerment gifts to 300 women comprising the aged, widows and vulnerable women in his Constituency.
Social media was awash over the weekend on why a serving lawmaker who was reputed to be a philanthropist and widely travelled, having spent the last three decades in the USA, would give such as empowerment tools to his constituents.
An Online Commentator, Adebisi Kolawole had engaged some of the lawmakers critics, thus: “In developed sense one will truly wonder how possible people should be empowered with such.
“But honestly, in deep meaning and taken cognisance of the environment, culture and beleive of our aged mums/ indigenous women, we will find a good sense in it.
“Goat breeding is most common among our indigenous women, and a traditional business of the Yorubas, aside that it has a unique significance in our culture.
“If you go to the interior part of our cities you will find them living in same house with their owners as they eat same food, many cherished them like their own kids.
“In traditional marriage, you must bring she goat as part bride price which symbolises growth and easy reproduction of the new wife, as they are mostly given to grandma’s to breed, that is when they name the goat and you see her taking care of the goat like a human.
“To add up, goat meat has been proven as best and nutritious compare to red meat. This makes it another economic means for the breeders, if you get to market you know how much it cost.
“Our local women love breeding them naturally and some prefer as business, looking at the picture you will notice those people are local women that will truly appreciate the goats.
“To me I will give to the man for identifying with these people, it is a good one and it shows he truly understands his people and touching various needs of his constituents. The man must be a real local/ traditional man. Breeding goats has a great positive meaning in yoruba culture, you know another thing those local women are the real voters wait and see the effect of this in the next election,” Kolawole opined.
Speaking to newsmen on the development, the lawmaker and member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), said, he carried out the empowerment based on the popular demand of his people.
He said the least amongst the 300 widows and aged ones were between 55-60years who felt having goats in their backyards would make them financially stable since the she-goats were of special breeds and could produce between three to four offsprings twice a year.
Olajide said, “I did this in conjunction with the Department of Animal Husbandry Services
Federal Ministry of Agriculture Rural Development. I facilitated and empowered majorly women/widows and the indigenous females within my constituency with breeding and caring of animals.
Stanley Olajide popularly known as Odidiomo said further, “I prepare them with the basic required skills through training and later handed the participants with live goats and financial back up for full engagement.
“We carefully selected the participants having identified their area of interest and needs, it is also worthy to state here that, this project was facilitated based on request, as I have always promised that any request from my constituents shall be given high consideration and within my capability/ capacity it shall be done,” Olajide added.
He said contrary to what critics are saying, the empowerment was another novel idea in addition to other empowerment programmes he had carried our like donation of cars, educational support programmes including cash awards as bursaries; training of over 500 youths in paint making and marketing amongst others.