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How Rivers Girl Emerged Newcastle Ambassador

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Lorraine Ichoku, 26 years old,  from Omoku, Rivers State recently emerged an Ambassador for Newcastle City, in the United Kingdom. This was in recognition of her spectacular role in the just concluded London 2012 Olympic and Paralympics games.

In an appointment letter signed by the British Prime Minister, David Cameron, and made available to The Tide, Lorraine was honoured for her inspiring and supportive role in making the London Olympic a huge success. The letter which read in part stated; “As a Newcastle Ambassador, you have ensured that thousands of people have enjoyed the London 2012 experience by the welcome  and spirit that you have shown visitors to your local area. You and your fellow volunteers have been an essential ingredient in a remarkable summer that millions of people across the country have shared and will remember for a lifetime.

“You have sent an incredible message about the warmth, friendliness and can-do spirit of the United Kingdom right around the world. Quite simply, the games couldn’t have happened without you,” the letter stated.

In a mark of appreciation, and gratitude, the British Prime Minister added that the experience from the games would encourage the recipient to continue to make a different in life.

Young Lorraine Ichoku, who travelled to the United Kingdom to pursue a masters degree programme in Public Health under the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Scholarship returned back to Nigeria, recently with a distinctive academic laurel.

She came out with a distinction in her Masters Programme in Public Health at the Northumbria University Newcastle City.

Lorraine who spoke with The Tide correspondents, in Port Harcourt, in an interview recently, said she went to the United Kingdom with a determined spirit to make the best use of all available opportunities that came her way.

Recalling her experience in the United Kingdom, she said, contrary to initial fears or racial prejudice, the environment was quite conducive and friendly and that spurred her drive towards academic excellence.

She said the learning culture encourages the spirit of excellence and she developed a firmer grasp of her objective in the foreign land.

Lorraine who was highly grateful to NDDC for giving her the opportunity, said she had to channel her intellectual energies to attain success so as to press home the advantages of a good and functional education. “While in the United Kingdom, I was very conscious of the fact that I would go back to Nigeria someday. I knew that my entire stay in the United Kingdom would be a waste if I didn’t do well, so I took my studies seriously and it paid off, today. I am very happy for making Rivers State and Nigeria proud, I am indeed grateful to NDDC for paying all my tuition and accommodation fees,” she said.

Lorraine who did her first degree in Bio-Chemistry at Bacbok University in Nigeria, said her purpose of studying Public Health at Masters level was to work in Nigeria and help her people in dire health needs.

Her vision is to ensure that Nigerians, especially those living at the grassroots, have access to good health care, adding that she would not hesitate if she has the opportunity of serving the teeming Nigerian masses living at the level of existence.

“Nigerians at the grassroots deserve better medicare, they are people that plants the food we eat, they bear the real burden of our national life, I will be very happy to render services to them if I have the opportunity. I have always longed to work for my people by providing the services that can improve their well-being,”  she stressed.

She discarded the wrong impression and perception held about Nigerians by most parts of the world.

According to her, “Nigerians in the United Kingdom are doing quite well  their the respective fields of endeavour. At the United Kingdom I met Nigerians who are on top of their careers, in the arts, medicine, law, banking, among others. Nigerians are indeed, great and superlative people.”

However, on return to Nigeria, Lorraine Ichoku was disturbed by the growing level of insecurity in the country, which has resulted in the wanton lost of lives and property. She also regrets that youths are at the roots of the growing insecurity.

She appealed to the Federal Government to address issues of insecurity which has affected the image of the country internationally, while also advising Young Lorraine also advised youths to channel their energies creatively and shun violence and other anti-social activities.

Commenting on her award as a Newcastle Ambassador, Lorraine said she was highly grateful to the British Government for the honour. She said her participation in the London Olympic as a volunteer, provided her with the opportunity of meeting people from all parts of the world and this according to her, enhanced her capacity for self expression and socialisation.

Lorraine Ichoku who also emerged the second best graduating student in her masters programme, said another Nigerian Youth, Kessy from Warri, emerged the overall best. according to her Nigeria youths are endowed with exceptional talents, and such lavishing sense of creativity can best be demonstrated through academic excellence. She sees education as “an ornament  that chastise vices, groom the mind and open windows of opportunities for its  proud and fulfilled owner”.

 

Taneh Beemene / Sylvia ThankGod-Amadi

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Looking Trendy In African Prints

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Fashion is dynamic as it changes with time. It can be St Michaels today and changes to Zara tomorrow. The next two or more years another guru can come up to take over the trending world.
Those who are in love with fashion always follow the trend. They want to appear trendy always. They are normally interested in every new design. Sometimes other necessities of life may matter to them as fashion will keep them going.
Fashion covers a wide range of fabrics. It just depends on the kind of fabrics anyone would love to go for.
It is important you know what kind of fashion you go for. Are you a jeans lover. Handbags and jewelries to match your dressing matte a lot. Colours of jackets and shoes that will go with ones personality also matter when it concerns fashion.
If you like being trendy, you need to know your brands. Each fashion designer will like to make sure they release new items once in a while to keep her customers abreast of the newest in town.
It may be difficult to keep track of all the fashion you see in the market of shop. It is better to make your selection and forgo other that may not suit you at that time.
It is necessary to follow fashion shows. All over the world today, various fashion shows take place in many cities at different time annually. Both fashion designers and their clients can see how to mix and match their outfits when they visit fashion homes.
In the years past, Ankara or African print was used as only wrappers by women. But nowadays, print can be used by ladies for shirts/blouses and even gowns. It is used for trousers and tops depending on the style in vogue.

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Women And Equal Representation In Society

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Women’s full and equal participation in all facets of society is a fundamental human right. Yet, within our communities, states and Nigeria at large and in fact the world over from politics to entertainment to the workplace, women and girls are largely under-represented.
When we take a closer look at this gender sensitivity over time, it clearly shows it has been imbalance.
Perhaps due to culture, norms and traditions, the consequences are far-reaching with detrimental and negative consequences on the personal, economic and future well-being of women and girls, their families and the community at large.
Building a sustainable future for all, means leaving no one behind. Women and girls are critical to finding solutions to the biggest challenges we face today and must be heard, valued and celebrated throughout society to reflect their perspectives and choices for their future and that of their families and society at large.
How many more generations are needed for women and girls to realise their rights? Women must begin to demand equal rights and opportunities for all folks.
Politically, women’s representation globally has doubled in the last 25 years. But, this only amounts to around one in four parliamentary seats held by women today.
Women continue to be significantly under-represented in the highest political positions. In October 2019, there were only 10 women Heads of State and 13 women Heads of Government across 22 countries, compared with four Heads of State and eight Prime Ministers across 12 countries in 1995.
At workplace, about two years ago, out of the 500 chief executives leading the highest-grossing firms, just under 7 per cent are women. Thank goodness, our own Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala is the current Director-General of the World Trade Organisation {WTO).
When looking at the workforce as a whole, the gender gap in labour force participation among prime working age adults (25 to 54) has stagnated over the past 20 years. Improved education among women has done little to shift deeply entrenched occupational segregation in developed and developing countries. Women continue to carry out a disproportionate share of unpaid care and domestic work. Women and girls are responsible in 80 per cent of households that do not have access to gender-sensitivity. Women and girls have little time for rest and sleep. If you allow them, they will work for 24 hours non-stop.
Annually, recognition of intellectual achievements and academic, cultural and scientific advances, the Nobel Prize has been awarded to more than 900 individuals in the course of its history from 1901 to 2019. Only 53 of the winners have been women, 19 in the categories of Physics, Chemistry, and Physiology or Medicine. Marie Curie became the first female laureate in 1903, when she and her husband won a joint Prize for Physics. Eight years later, she was solely awarded the Chemistry Prize, making her the only woman in history to win the Nobel Prize twice. Although women have been behind a number of scientific discoveries throughout history, just 30 per cent of researchers worldwide and 35 per cent of all students enrolled in STEM-related fields of study are women.
When it comes to equality of men and women in news media, progress has not been encouraging. According to reports,  participation and representation of women in the news media for about two decades in many countries, only 24 per cent of the persons heard, read about or seen in newspaper, television and radio news are women. A lot of improvement has been recorded for women news reporters in newspaper bylines and newscast reports, with 37 per cent of stories reported by women as of 2015, showing little difference over a decade. Despite the democratising promise of digital media, women’s poor representation in traditional news media is also reflected in digital news, with women making up only 26 per cent of the people in Internet news stories and media news tweets. Only 4 per cent of traditional news and digital news stories clearly challenge gender stereotypes. Among other factors, stereotypes and the significant under-representation of women in the media play a significant role in shaping harmful attitudes of disrespect and violence towards women.
If you talk about entertainment industry, like other forms of media, film and television have a powerful influence in shaping cultural perceptions and attitudes towards gender and are key to shifting the narrative for the gender equality agenda. Yet, an analysis of popular films across 11 countries found, for example, that 31 per cent of all speaking characters were women and that only 23 per cent featured a female protagonist, a number that closely mirrored the percentage of women filmmakers.
The gross under-representation of women in the film industry is also glaringly evident in critically acclaimed film awards: In the 92-year history of the Oscars, only five women have ever been nominated for the Best Director Award category; and one woman, Kathryn Bigelow has ever won.
A lot of women in Nigeria, like Liz Benson, Eucharia Anunobi, Patience Ozokwo, Joke Silva, Monalisa Chinda, to mention but a few, have done well in the entertainment industry. But we need more women in film, on-screen and off-screen.
In sports, the power to inspire change and break gender stereotypes is possible and women have been doing just that decade after decade, showing that they are just as capable, resilient and strong as men physically.
Today, women are far more visible in sports than ever before: The Tokyo 2020 Olympics is projected to have close to equal representation of women and men competing for the first time in its history. For comparison, only 22 women (2.2 per cent) out of a total of 997 athletes competed in the modern Olympics for the first time in 1900. Women and men will compete in almost all sports categories.
Chioma Ajunwo and Mary Onyeali are some of the sportswomen in Nigeria we can talk about when it comes to excellence.
Despite progress, women still continue to be excluded in certain sports in parts of the world and are paid far less than men in wages and prize money globally. Women need to be encouraged more in sports like the men.
Despite women being prescribed stereotypical roles in the kitchen at home, the upper echelons of the restaurant industry have remained relatively closed to female chefs Women must often overcome active discrimination and move away from a culture that both glorifies masculinity and tacitly condones harassment. Paired with long, unpredictable and inflexible working hours, unfriendly family and childcare policies and lower salaries, women face enormous challenges when entering the restaurant business. Women need to be in control of hospitality business as chefs..

By: Eunice Choko-Kayode

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Women

Ondo Women Protest Half-Naked Over Insecurity

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Hundreds of women across four local government areas in Ondo State on Saturday protested against worsening security challenges in the area.
The women, who took to the streets of Oka Akoko, Akungba Akoko and some other Akoko towns, demanded improved security from the state and federal government.
Recent spate of insecurity in the area include abduction of teachers by gunmen in Auga Akoko, the killing of a police officer at Oka Akoko last week, and the attack on 17 travellers on Ifira Akoko-Isua Akoko road by armed robbers among others.
Some of the protesters, who held brooms, were half-naked and chanting various solidarity songs along the streets.
Recall that Amotekun Corps also arrested no fewer than 17 suspected bandits from the North-West of Nigeria when they stormed Okitipupa area of the state.
The suspected criminals were found with dogs, cutlasses and charms as they wandered in the area without purpose.
It was the distress call by residents of the community to Amotekun operatives that led to their arrest.

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