The Return of An Amazon: Tasks Ahead!



Dr Ini Adiakpan, Commissioner of Women Affairs and Social Welfare

The Akwa Ibom State Governor, Mr. Umo Eno had recently sworn in commissioners for the new State Exco.

A cursory look saw a prominent personality among the commissioners inaugurated – Dr Ini Adiakpan. With an almost 100% certainty, she was not sure to miss from the lineup of the new commissioners. 

At his opening remarks during the Akwa Ibom dialogue in Ibom Icon hotels, the governor was clear that though he had returned all members of the previous State Executive Council, continuity was a matter of performance. He made it clear that the dialogue’s essence was to help the incoming team, develop a blueprint and work plan to work with.

Dr Adiakpan’s first stint at the helm of affairs in the ministry was classical. We currently have four female state legislators and Council chiefs each. The state now has a draft Orphans and vulnerable children policy in place. The albino network has been added to the joint national association of persons with disabilities (JONAPWD) in the State. She played leading roles in the Nigeria for women project for the economic advancement of women in the state.Dr Adiakpan has been insistent on gender parity in all her empowerment and development initiatives in the ministry.

A critical essence for the existence of Government is the welfare and security of citizens and her ministry is saddled with the responsibility of ensuring in part, this is accomplished. 

A round peg in a round hole, she resumes her responsibilities in the ministry again, with a determination to translate components of the ARISE AGENDA relevant to her ministry. Anyone who knows Dr Ini Adiakpan can ascertain her discipline in getting tasks done. Her networks within the development space will enhance her ability to collaborate with relevant development partners to execute our work plans. 

Dr Adiakpan has the credentials for being thorough, a virtue she will bring to bear in her assignments. Her background as an astute education administrator, humanitarian, politician and development expert makes her fit for this role. 

In her first term, her bias for incorporating technology in building the capacity of citizens under her care – those living with disabilities saw her organize a digital skills training for the blind on the use of Android phones, especially to connect with the online digital space. She continues to engender gender parity in doing this.

The economic, political and social empowerment of women which forms a critical component of the ARISE AGENDA is one she was already pursuing given the earlier mentioned achievements.

As one who owns an orphanage she understands intrinsically, the management of such a home, her career as a politician places her on the advantage to understand the role women can play when politically included. Indeed, Prof Joy Ogwu, who once served as Nigeria’s permanent representative at the United Nations once posited that” a society which fails to include women in its developmental agenda, is like a man who runs on one leg”. Truly, a one leg runner can not be as efficient and fast as a man who runs on both legs, this underpins the role that women empowerment and inclusion can play in the development of our state – a role Dr Adiakpan is fully aware of . 

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Government therefore has the mandate to shore up budgetary provisions and releases to help actualize these mandates. Critical stakeholders must ensure they provide meaningful contributions to improve on the lot of her ministry.

As she begins, there will be the need to effectively equip the ministry’s workforce with the relevant training and skill sets to interpret and run with the developed work plan. 

Dr Adiakpan resumes duties with a determination to leave a legacy in her ministry, like every other task she has handled, she delivers!

Written by Ifiok Umoren

Program Lead

Greater tomorrow Initiative 

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