Over four thousand women from eight Local Government Areas that constitute the Rivers West Senatorial District, on January 22, defying the scorching sun, walked from Western Ahoada County High School to St. Paul’s State School field, Ahoada Town, to reiterate their support for the Governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Sir Siminalayi Fubara.
The walk, tagged Rivers West Women Unite for SIM, had an array of female stakeholders and politicians, who made far reaching statements on the stance of women as regards the current Political era.
Notable amongst those who delivered solidarity messages were the Deputy Governor of Rivers State, and Rivers West Senatorial Candidate, Dr. Mrs. Ipalibo Harry Banigo, PDP Governorship candidate, Prof. Mrs. Ngozi Odu, Federal Lawmaker and House of Representatives candidate for Asari Toru/ Akuku Toru Federal Constituency, Hon. Boma Goodhead, Her majesty Dame Victoria Awuse, Commissioner for Women Affairs, Mrs. Ukel Oyaghiri, Chairman of Bonny Local Government Area, Dame Anengi Barasua Claude Wilcox, Wife of PDP State Chairman, Mrs. Ene Akawor, PDP State Woman leader, Hon. Marian Ogbonna.
In their respective speeches, they spoke on the need for women to collect and protect their Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs), in readiness for the General Elections in February and March.
They Expressed appreciation to the Rivers State Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, for his continuous support for the political aspirations of women in the State, which has culminated to the emergence of a female Deputy Governor, female Senator, female members of the National and State Assembly, Female Commissioners, female Special Advisers, Female Judges of Federal and State High Courts, female Magistrates, Female Local Government Chairman, female Vice Chairmen of all the Local Government Areas, and other key appointments.
They said Governor Wike’s gender friendly posture and policies have been an immense boost for women.
Earlier in her address, Convener of the Walk and Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Hon. Mrs. Tonye Briggs Oniyide, said the walk was to create awareness in the area and also tell the world that the women from the Senatorial District are ready to cast their votes for the party’s Governorship candidate Siminalayi Fubara and other candidates of the party during the general elections.
Oniyide, who doubles as Deputy Director of the Mobilization (women) Directorate of the State Campaign Council, said women came from Abua/ Odual, Ahaoad East, Ahoada West, Asari Toru, Akuku Toru, Bonny, Degema and Ogba Egbema Ndoni (ONELGA), to participate in the walk as a show of their commitment to the Consolidation of the New Rivers Agenda that will bring about infrastructure and manpower Development in the state.
Some prominent women who participated in the walk included Member representing Okrika State Constituency, Hon. Linda Somiari Stewart , Deputy Director of the Mobilization (women) Directorate of the State Campaign Council Hon. Alali Irimagha, former member of the House of Representatives Hon. Blessing Nsiegbe, Former Commissioner for Special Duties, Mrs. Emily Solomon, former Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, Mrs. Nancy Nwankwo, Wife of the Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly, Mrs. Ugar Ikuinyi Owaji Ibani, Wife of the Chief of Staff, Mrs. Grace Woke, wife of the Head of Service, Dr. Matilda Rufus Godwin, Hon. Daisy West, Hon. Alaso Obi, Ada Omuma Hon. Victoria, Nwokocha Chikeka, Hon Gloria Boma Harry, Mrs. Onyi Ile, and Hon. Okorite Adiele, amongst several others.
Key members of the State Campaign Council, including the Deputy Speaker of the State House of Assembly and Director of the Mobilization Directorate, Rt. Hon. Edison Ehie, Zonal Coordinator Rivers West Senatorial Zone, Chief David Briggs, Commissioner for Water Resources, Professor Kaniye Ebeku, Member of the State House of Assembly and candidate for Asari Toru State Constituency 2, Hon. Lolo Opuende, and others were on hand to give the women morale support.
On the sidelines of the walk was the exercise session, which was followed closely by scintillating performances by Jikume Bethlehem (Oshikiri 1 of Africa) Muma Gee and Holy.