From Fred Itua, Abuja
No fewer tha 14 first ladies have won this year’s edition of The Most Valuable Governor’s Wife Award.
The first ladies, include Lami Ahmadu Fintiri, Adamawa; Aisha Bala Mohammed, Bauchi; Falmata Zulum, Borno; Rachael Umahi, Ebony; Betsy Obaseki, Edo State; Bisi Fayemi, Ekiti; Hadiza Isma El-Rufai, Kaduna; and Hafsat Ganduje, Kano State.
Others are Zakkiya Masari, Katsina; Folake Abdulrazaq, Kwara; Kafayat Oyetola, Osun; Regina Lalong, Plateau; Maryam Tambuwal, Sokoto; Anna Ishayku, Taraba; and Aisha Matawalle, Zamfara.
Team leader and Chief Executive Officer of the Awards, Tom Obulu, said it is designed to lead a new phenomenon in the assessment and recognition of governors’ wives who are providing complementary achievements to their spouses’ achievements.
He said governors’ wives have become part of the democratic team that have been providing grassroots development, hence the institution of this award.
He said: “The 36 governors’ wives and the wife of the FCT minister are assessed based on their project availabilities in the public domain and their impacts on their beneficiaries are considered.
“Thereafter, the governors’ wives shortlist comes from impact of their projects experienced by the beneficiaries in their various localities with the assessment team adopting certain criteria.
“They’re sustainability, empowerment, impact, change agent and corporate branding, according to global best practices.”
“The earlier editions were held in Abuja (since 2014, 2015 and 2017), where the amiable governors’ wives whose non-governmental organisations made public impacts received the golden sculpture for the first time in the history of Nigeria.
“The past key note speakers were Folorunsho Alakija (The richest black woman in the world) in 2014; Fati Abubakar (former first lady) and Chief Mrs. Titi Abubakar (former vice president wife).
“For instance, Bauchi State governor’s wife with her Al-Muhibba Foundation and its unique selling point, cemetery upgrade/beautification, and smart agriculture for indigent women in FCT/Bauchi State, has done a lot. She is a second time winner of the award.”