By Mojola Aturamu
The Ekiti State Government on Monday announced that rapists and wife beaters in the state will henceforth face life imprisonment after being tried in court.
Kola Ajumobi, the Permanent Secretary in the State Ministry of Information, Youth and Sports Development, made this announcement at a public enlightenment forum in Ado Ekiti. He also added that there will be an increase in the maternity leave period for women in its public service from 12 weeks to 16 weeks.
He said that the gesture was approved by the state governor, Mr Ayodele Fayose, as part of his display of love and special regard for the womenfolk in the state which is aimed at encouraging exclusive breastfeeding for newly born children in the first six months of birth and to promote good nutrition for both mothers and their newborn children.
Ajumobi said that nursing mothers would, in addition to the four months, be granted two hours’ off duty everyday for a period of six months from the date they resumed from maternity leave. He also said the crèche at the state secretariat had also been invigorated to boost bonding between mothers and their children during official working hours without undue hindrance to performance and efficiency at the workplace.
The permanent secretary lamented that lack of good nutrition; poverty, hunger as well as lack of access to economic and political empowerment had largely contributed to high maternal and child mortality.
To show the commitment of the Fayose-led administration to women, measures available include the provision of N500million as revolving soft-loan to promote small and medium enterprises driven by women. Women farmers also have access to various incentives.
He however also noted that the present administration in the state is in great support of women in politics and would also continue to roll out various palliative packages exclusively for women to empower and guard them from avoidable travails and any harmful practice against women would be treated with utmost attention.