Patience Jonathan pledges to support Aisha Buhari
THE First Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan, has assured her successor-to-be, Mrs. Aisha Buhari, of her support during her tenure as first lady.
Mrs. Jonathan declared during the commissioning of the ultra modern skills acquisition centre built by the Defence and Police Officers Wives Association (DEPOWA) in Abuja: “I know that a few days from now, we will be bowing out, but my doors are always open.
“Anytime I’m there for you. I will make sure that I support my sister, the incoming first lady, to make sure Nigeria remains safe.”
The centre, she noted, is a testimony that the body desires to improve the quality of life “and guarantee the future of wives and children” of the fallen heroes. She added: “I’m impressed with the decision to establish a skills acquisition centre in memory of the fallen heroes of the Nigerian Armed Forces and other security agencies, who died in the fight against insurgents.
“It is commendable. We thank God that our military is winning the battle against the insurgents in the northeast, if they can excel in peacekeeping operations in other parts of the world, I’m convinced that they will also excel at home.”
She urged that the project, intended primarily to benefit the families of those that lost their lives in the course of defending the country, should be “utilised by the beneficiaries to improve their living condition and that of their children.”
Dame Patience Jonathan also challenged the wives of military men to inspire their spouses to do better in defending the country, because women “have critical roles to play in ensuring peace and development in the country. Let us continue to embrace peace and dialogue in addressing all our differences.”
The first lady reiterated her desire to see a united, peaceful and safe country even after May 29, insisting that all her friends will have unfettered access to her.
On her part, President of DEPOWA, Mary Iyah Badeh, said there has always been a compelling need for the skills acquisition centre to cater for the needs of the youths and dependants in the barracks. She said the chasm needed to be bridged because of the “desire to emancipate the barracks community, especially the women and youths.
The services on offer at the centre include tailoring, catering, hairdressing, soap making and Information and Communication Technology.