The Strong Girl Initiative Panel Discussion By ONE Organisation
The ONE organisation had a panel discussion at Terra Kulture on the 28th of August, 2015. The environment before the panelists came into the hall was buzzed as the press got accredited and set up to witness history in the making. Think of your primary school classroom before your class/ subject teacher arrives. Slowly the panelist troop in. Banky W, Bono, Selmor, Omotola , Dbanj, Waje, Diamond and Dr Sipho S. Moyo take their seats.
As Dr Sipho S. Moyo opened the panel discussion with a brief introduction of the One organization and statistics, she is the moderator for the day. One organization according to Dr. Sipho was set up to eradicate poverty across the globe. The Strong Girl initiative is aimed at doing that with empowering females. As statistics have shown that there are more lady farmers and male ‘middle men’ reap more of the agricultural venture than this women are not empowered.
Omotola Jalade Ekehinde Nollywood actress and member of ONE was the first panelist to talk about her engagement with ONE. Explaining the encompassing nature of women she tells us ‘ empower a woman and you would be training a village, a community, a continent and the world’. She uses herself as a very good example of a woman who has been empowered and explains that in case of emergencies and other needs of the family, when her husband isn’t available, she would be able to take care of those needs. Most women don’t have that option, children have been known to die because of such situations and this can be avoided when a woman is empowered.She urged each and every body present to join the ONE organization.
Dbanj Musician and member of ONE picks up from where Omotola left, speaking on empowering women he sheds more light on the agricultural sector which he believes it is key to eradicating poverty in Africa. He believes in gender equality and in giving the ladies an equal chance to make an impact in the world, It is evident in the the music industry as well. Everybody should be given equal chances to make this continent better. During his Agricultural project with ONE he realized that women were farmers as well and major contributors and deserve to be empowered.
Selmor is the daughter of music legend Oliver Mtukudzi and it put pressure on her as she decided to get in that line. It was difficult for her because her father didn’t support her and that was because of her gender. She has faced first hand bthe ills of not empowering a woman just because of her gender. She urges the public to empower women, see them as equals, not that women are better but because they have the right to be on the same line.
Diamond was raised by a single mother since he was a year old.and he believes that she made him who he is today. He asks, what if women were empowered ? Giving equal chances? If women everywhere were empowered then it would change a lot. His story is a living testimony of how women struggle and overcome, it would be more noticeable if women were empowered.
Waje the lead voice in the Strong Girl song is a musician and member of the ONE organization, she was honoured to be in the panel and making a a difference in the world. She recognizes that One has the mission to change the world but it can’t go anywhere without the help of the media, the public, pushing the agenda forward for ONE as one. Empowering a lady, empowers the continent. This is a movement and she urges everybody to partake in it.
Banky W said he was honoured and privileged to lend his voice to a cause like this. He said we need to do better for our women. Stating statistics, more than 4.96 million girls om Nigeria are out of school, women in Nigeria have a higher probability of dying during childbirth. Nigeria has one of the lowest rates of employed women. He enlightens us on how women are at risk every day. He said it is hypocritical that we say we love and respect our women but we do not treat them that way and he employs us to empower them, educate them and we would surely reap the benefits.
Bono starts with telling us about something exciting that ONE is a part of, there is shared conversation happening right now, north and south of the equator where there is a growing impatience about injustice and inequality. There is that shared impatience and ONE is just proud to be part of it. Up on till this point, the organization should have been called half not one, in his own opinion and that’s because this initiative has brought more light to the vision of one.
Change has come to Africa, ideologies rule the world and as sensitive as the picture is, let us look at the bigger picture and change the outcome of our lives. Join ONE as they reach out to every girl, lady and woman and make her feel STRONG.