Today is the International women’s day, in celebrating women all over the world NAIJALIKERZ put together a list of 5 Nigerian women who made an impressive mark on Nigerian history during their life time…
Funmilayo Ransome Kuti: was a teacher, political campaigner, women’s rights activist and traditional aristocrat. She served with distinction as one of the most prominent leaders of her generation. She was also the first woman in Nigeria to drive a car. Her political activism led to her being described as the doyen of female rights in Nigeria, as well as to her being regarded as “The Mother of Africa.” Early on, she was a very powerful force advocating for the Nigerian woman’s right to vote. She was described in 1947, by the West African Pilot as the “Lioness of Lisabi” for her leadership of the women of the Egba clan that she belonged to on a campaign against their arbitrary taxation. That struggle led to the abdication of the Egba high king Oba Ademola II in 1949. Kuti was the mother of the activists Fela Anikulapo Kuti, a musician, Beko Ransome-Kuti, a doctor, and Professor Olikoye Ransome-Kuti, a doctor and a former health minister of Nigeria. She was also grandmother to musicians Seun Kuti and Femi Kuti.
Margret Ekpo: was a Nigerian women’s rights activist and social mobilizer who was a pioneering female politician in the country’s First Republic and a leading member of a class of traditional Nigerian women activists, many of whom rallied women beyond notions of ethnic solidarity. She played major roles as a grassroot and nationalist politician in the Eastern Nigerian city of Aba, in the era of an hierarchical and male-dominated movement towards independence, with her rise not the least helped by the socialization of women’s role into that of helpmates or appendages to the careers of males.
Hajia Gambo Sawaba: (1933-2001) was a Nigerian politician and activist who was a supporter of the Northern Elements Progressive Union during the Nigerian First Republic. She was one of the early members of NEPU in Zaria, then the party identified with the working class and poor and was manned by their main support base. Her political activities during the period earned her persecutions from both the colonial authorities and the native administrations which resulted in her being incarcerated for more than a dozen times. Her biography included notes on several instances of beatings and assaults attributed to the NPC’s Yan Mahaukita. She is also known for some of her charitable causes and also for her views on womens liberation in the arena of politics.
Dora Akunyili: was the Director General of National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) of Nigeria and Nigerian Minister of Information and Communications from 2008 to 2010. She was a pharmacist and governmental administrator who gained international recognition and won several awards for her work in pharmacology, public health and human rights. Following her appointment as the Director General of NAFDAC in April 2001, Akunyili established as a top priority the eradication of counterfeit drugs and unsafe food. Before her assumption of office in NAFDAC, fake and substandard foods and drugs were sold in Nigeria without any form of regulation, until she came along. Although Akunyili faced considerable risk to her personal safety in her fight to combat the issue of fake drugs, she was determined.
Ameyo Adadevoh: was a Nigerian physician. Her great-grandfather, Herbert Macaulay, is one of the most celebrated founders of modern Nigeria. Her father was a physician and former Vice chancellor of the University of Lagos and she was also the grand niece of Nigeria’s first president Nnamdi Azikiwe. She is credited with having curbed a wider spread of the Ebola virus in Nigeria by placing the patient zero, Patrick Sawyer, in quarantine despite pressures from the Liberian Government. On 4 August 2014, it was confirmed that she had tested positive for Ebola virus disease and was being treated. Adadevoh died in the afternoon of 19 August 2014. She was posthumously praised for preventing the Nigerian index case from leaving the hospital at the time of diagnosis, thereby playing a key role in curbing the spread of the virus in Nigeria.
These are our top 5!!!