Adebayo Adenrele and Precious Oham
CULLED FROM NEWSHEREANDTHERE MAGAZINE
Politics, as being projected in Nigeria is not a roof that people, especially women can carry. It’s being posited as a building only to be built and managed by the so-called stronger sex.
Ekiti State, since its creation in 1996 has not recorded any woman in history to hold key positions that would make the state and the nation to see them worthwhile; women are rather being placed somewhere or not given any stool to manage at all.
Ekiti State, under the administration of Governor Biodun Oyebanji has been extending a hand of friendship and opportunities to women, so that their voices can be heard in the state.
The evolution of Olubunmi Adelugba, as the first female Speaker, Ekiti State House of Assembly is an indication of active women involvement and participation in Nigerian politics, especially Ekiti as a study.
Who is Olubunmi Adelugba!
Olubunmi Adelugba is a tax expert who has more than two decades of work experience in audit and corporate advisory services, finance consultancy, oil and gas, accounting, non-governmental organisation reporting and active governance within and outside Nigeria.
She has handled several assignments relating to raising finance and restructuring for both corporate and state governments.
She worked in Olusola Adekanola & Co as Principal Consultant and also headed the tax audit for Rivers State Government and also worked as a member in a team of consultants for re-engineering and reconstruction of moribund companies within and outside Nigeria.
Adelugba was in Action Aid Nigeria as the Management Accountant and Action Aid International Cameroun as Head of Finance providing a lead in the internal, international and statutory audit support for the Countries’ Program, where she provided guidance, built capacity and ensured compliance to company accounting policies and reporting requirements locally and internationally.
Adelugba, who holds a Masters’ degree in Financial Management, is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (FCA) , the Managing Partner of Bunmi Adelugba & Co and Boomade Professional Services.
She is also Fellow of Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (FCTI) and Chartered Public Finance Accountants (CPFA).
Pathway into Politics.
Adelugba, a member of All Progressive Congress, APC, served as pioneer Commissioner for Labour, Productivity and Human Capital Development in Ekiti State.
She was also Special Adviser Revenue Matters and Taxation in Ekiti State.
She was elected into Ekiti Assembly in 2019 and a former Chief Whip of the Assembly that represented Emure constituency.
Following a number of unexpected situations, Adelugba was elected Speaker by the unanimous decision of the 17 lawmakers out of 25, on 21st November, 2022.
Despite the circumstances that orchestrated Adelugba’s emergence as Ekiti Speaker after the impeachment of Gboyega Aribisogan, the fact that she got the unanimous thumbs-up of her colleagues was said to be a reflection of her character and personality.
Astonishing Moves after Emergence –
Rt. Hon. Olubunmi Adelugba among her numerous development activities led other principal officers of the Assembly on visits to special schools for the physically challenged and other centres for the care of vulnerable citizens where they made cash donations for the welfare of the inmates.
The centres visited by the delegation included; School for the Blind, Ikere Ekiti; Sexual Assault Referral Centre, Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital, Ado Ekiti; Erelu Adebayo Children’s Home, Iyin Ekiti and School for the Mentally Retarded, Ido Ekiti.
The Speaker noted that both the executive and legislative arms of the government would continue to accord priority to the welfare of vulnerable citizens in the state since they are integral parts of the society who should be supported to contribute meaningfully to humanity.
She explained that the visit of the lawmakers to the centres was to send a message that the inmates are not forgotten and that everything necessary must be done to assist them to make them comfortable and not feel neglected or abandoned.
In her words, “If you can learn very well, you can be sure that you will achieve what other people that are doing well are achieving and even do better than they are. People who are physically challenged always put their minds in whatever they do because of their condition and you will discover that their determination always make them excel.
“You are going to move from here and go to the university and be able to do greater things in life. We are here to let you know that you are not forgotten, you are in the mind of the state government and you are also in the mind of Mr. Governor, a man who has demonstrated his love for you by his gestures.”
Rt. Hon. Olubunmi Adelugba also enlisted the support of traditional rulers, security agencies, judiciary, media and other stakeholders to reduce Gender-Based Violence in the state.
She called for more vigorous and effective prosecution of sex Offenders and other violators of Gender-Based Violence to end the culture of impunity and foster a culture of justice for the victims and deterrent for the offenders and potential offenders.
The Speaker emphasized that Gender-Based Violence represents a crime against individuals, the society and humanity saying it is a battle that must be won to make Ekiti safe for women, girl child and other vulnerable citizens of the state so that their rights will not be violated.
Nigerian women are creating new leadership legacies that inspire women and girls in Nigeria, Africa, and beyond.
They are proving to be shining beacons of public leadership on the global stage.
Just like Adelugba,other women in this category are Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala who served as the director-general of the World Trade Organization, Amina J. Mohammed , the UN deputy secretary-general and chair of the UN Sustainable Development Group, Dr. Jumoke Oduwole ,special advisor to the president of Nigeria on ease of doing business.
Adelugba has joined Nigerian women who are making strides in public leadership locally and globally and are fighting against all odds in addressing inequality.