Mrs Dolapo Osinbajo, the wife of the Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, at the International Women's Day celebration in Vienna/Photo: Oluyemi Ogundele

Nigeria’s Second Lady visits Vienna, celebrates African women

The wife of Nigeria’s vice president visited Vienna, Austria, recently mainly to attend an event commemorating the International Women’s Day. Oluyemi Ogundele* reports on the august visit

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The three-day visit of the wife of the Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Mrs Dolapo Osinbajo ended on a higher note.

The official visit started on Friday, the 11th of March 2022 with a courtesy call to the office of the Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency at the Vienna International Centre.

During the visit, Mrs Osinbajo had an inspiring conversation with Director Rafael Grossi on capacity building for Nigerian women and how to create more opportunities for Nigerian girls and women with the help of Nuclear Science. She also had discussion on the “Ray of Hope” initiative to fight unequal cancer care in Africa and developing countries.

A cross-section of participants at the International Women’s Day celebration in Vienna/Photo: Oluyemi Ogundele

Saturday, the 12th of March was dedicated to the 2022 International Women’ Day celebration. Mrs Osinbajo delivered an inspiring speech as the keynote speaker at the well-attended event.

Her presentation started with a video clip of the activities of her NGO, The Women’s Helping Hands Initiative (TWHHI), highlighting, among others, how her intervention is providing shelter and rehabilitation services to survivors of violence and trafficking, such as skill acquisition training for women and men, advocacy on safety and protection of the girl child, mentorship programs for youths and giving of physical aid to vulnerable groups and communities.

In her keynote address, Nigeria’s Second Lady spoke on equal opportunities for both men and women. She listed some of the achievements made by women in our society and mentioned the name of some of Nigeria’s female heroes and their achievements.

Mrs Dolapo Osinbajo, the wife of the Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, delivering the keynote at the International Women’s Day celebration in Vienna/Photo: Oluyemi Ogundele

Other speakers at the event include Mrs Violet Onyemenam, the General Counsel at the OPEC Fund for International Development, who spoke on ‘SDG 5: Gender Equality and Women’.

Mrs Hadiza Barkindo, the wife of the Secretary General of OPEC, spoke on “Breaking the Gender Bias in Nigeria”

The chief host of the event was His Excellency Dr Suleiman Dauda Umar, the Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to Austria and Slovakia.

Her Excellency Mrs Dolapo Osinbajo and Rafael Grossi, Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency at the Vienna International Centre/Photo: Oluyemi Ogundele

In his short opening remarks, he welcomed Her Excellency Mrs Dolapo Osinbajo and her delegation to Vienna and congratulated all women to the 2022 International Women’s Day.

He then highlighted the importance of the event and the need for both genders to work together as one. On a lighter mood, he said there is no way you can write or spell women without including men “WO-MEN”

The event was anchored by Mrs Vire Komolafe of the Global Diaspora Engagement.

The chairman of the local organising committee, Engr Oluyemi Ogundele, on behalf of his team thanked all the speakers and participants, both physical and virtual. He then recognised the presence of two young Nigerian ladies in the hall who have been assisting displaced Nigerian students from Ukraine in Vienna, providing them with food and accommodation.

Ogundele challenged all to keep the Nigerian flag flying. He made a symbolic presentation of a Nigerian flag table and wall clock to the speakers and the moderator as souvenir under the motto “Keep the Flag Flying”

Engr Oluyemi Ogundele reports from Vienna, Austria

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