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Obaseki: Benin, other towns to have free internet access; Says female appointees spearheading Edo’s progress

In a bid to make Benin City and some other towns in Edo State major information and entrepreneurial hubs, Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has said that the ongoing laying of fiber optic cables in the state will be completed soon, to provide for hotspots for free access to the Internet at designated places.

The governor said this at the Edo Youth Summit/Job Fair held at the Edo Innovation Hub, as part of activities to mark his administration’s second year anniversary.

Explaining the development, Obaseki said: “If you are observant, you would have seen men digging trenches to lay fiber optic cables. By the time we are done with the work, you all can have free internet access at designated places in Benin City and some other towns.”

The hotspots are expected to deepen internet access in the state, as it will complement work at Edo Innovates, an ICT incubation hub.

Geared towards start-up acceleration, ICT training, digital design, SME development, grant writing and many other efforts, the hub has had no less than 2,114 beneficiaries who found jobs or created one to the benefit others.

Explaining his commitment to job creation through ICT, the governor restated that the sector is for the youth. “That is one of the  places where the youth can find expression,” he said.

Meanwhile, Governor Obaseki, has disclosed how he created more roles for women to find expression in his government, assuring that they will continue to be given priority due to their sterling performance.

He added that the women have shown to be hard working, diligent, and justify the confidence reposed in them.

The governor said this at the Edo Women’s Summit held at the University of Benin (UNIBEN) Sports Complex, in Ugbowo, Benin City, as part of activities to mark the second-year anniversary of the administration.

He said “Women will have priority in my administration.  I am proud of the women who have been given opportunity to serve in my administration, they are achieving a lot of successes and making progress in their endeavours.

He described women in the Edo chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as faithful followers and urged them to continue to support the party.

According to him, “When I found out that I did not have the number of women I wanted as commissioners, I created opportunities for more of them to join my government and I am very proud with what the women working with me are doing.

“Whether it is the Attorney General, Prof. Yinka Omorogbe; the woman who is building 1,400 houses for the very first time almost in the last 16 years in Edo State, Isoken Omo, in Edo Development and Property Agency (EDPA) or the amazon of a woman, who is changing education in Edo State, Dr. Joan Osa Oviawe. I could go on and on. All the remarkable changes we are making in my government are being spearheaded by women and I thank all of you.”

Wife of the Edo Governor, Mrs Betsy Obaseki, said the state has evidence of robust engagement with women, listing the projects being executed by her office to include Centre for Women Development, Betsy’s Angels Shelter, Edo Youth Academy, Betsy Obaseki After School Club, Edo Women for Agriculture and Enterprise, Market-Moni, among others.

Mrs. Obaseki said when women are empowered they would be able to contribute to nation building, noting that women were strong forces to reckon with.

She commended women of the state for supporting the Governor Obaseki-led administration, assuring that the administration was committed to their welfare and progress.

She also commended the Bank of Industry for its support in ensuring the growth of small and medium scale businesses in the state.

“My office is collaborating with BOI in the trader and market moni programme which will be rolled out across the state.

“We are targeting to have 50,000 beneficiaries in the financial inclusion scheme in the state.

The first lady presented awards to 36 outstanding women from the 18 local government areas under the Community Mobiliser Award category and also presented the Civil Service Emeritus Award to the retiring Head of service of Edo, Mrs Gladys Idahor.

In her speech, the Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Mrs Magdalene Ohenhen, said the Obaseki-led administration was addressing the gender gap in the state via appointment of women in political and administrative positions.

The women summit was colourful and attended by different women groups from across the 18 local government areas of the state.


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