A member of the house of representative, Adedeji Olajide of Northwest/Southwest Federal Constituency at the National Assembly, has defended his cash and goat gifts to 300 aged, widows and the vulnerable women in his constituency as a means of empowerment in Ibadan, Oyo state.
Social media has been awash on why a serving lawmaker who is reputed for philanthropy gave goats to vulnerable women as empowerment materials in his constituency.
Gbolahan Etti queried, “For Asun or pepper soup?”
Tobstobss wrote, “To eat or to do what?”
United FC99 said, “Them go enjoy tire this Easter. Asun galore.”
The Queens-hub, said, “Just imagine the people we call our leaders.”
However, an online commentator, Adebisi Kolawole engaged some of the lawmaker’s critics, by saying, “But honestly, taking cognisance of the environment, culture and belief of our aged mums/indigenous women, we will find a good sense in it.
“Goat breeding is most common among our indigenous women, and a traditional business of the Yorubas, aside that it has a unique significance in our culture.
“If you go to the interior part of our cities you will find them living in same house with their owners as they eat same food, many cherished them like their own kids.
“For traditional marriages, you must bring a she-goat as part of bride price which symbolises growth and easy reproduction for the new wife, as they are mostly given to grandmas to breed. They will name the goat and take care of the goat like a human.
“To add up, goat meat has been proven as best and nutritious compared to red meat. This makes it another economic means for the breeders. If you get to market you know how much it cost.
“I will give (it) to the man for identifying with these people. It is a good one and it shows he truly understands his people and touching various needs of his constituents. The man must be a real local/ traditional man. Breeding goats has a great positive meaning in yoruba culture.
“You know another thing; those local women are the real voters. Wait and see the effect of this in the next election.”
While reacting in an interview with journalists, the lawmaker said the empowerment materials were distributed based on popular demand by his people. He said the youngest of the 300 widows were between ages 55 and 60years, adding, “I did this in conjunction with the Department of Animal Husbandry Services, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
“I facilitated and empowered majorly women/widows and the indigenous females within my constituency with breeding and caring of animals. I prepare them with the basic required skills through training and later handed the participants with live goats and financial back-up for full engagement.
“We carefully selected the participants having identified their areas of interest and needs. It is also worthy to state here that this project was facilitated based on request. As I have always promised that any request from my constituents shall be given high consideration and within my capability/ capacity it shall be done.”