'Women should be seen not heard.' This was one belief that ruled Nigeria back in the days. A belief that made a lot of women give up on dreams. Some women never bothered to dream at all. But, some Nigerian women notwithstanding the challenges, remained undaunted, pursuing their dreams, treading parts not treaded by men let alone other women. These women set themselves apart in their endeavours. These women are nothing but role models to other women, to female children and of course to the male gender.
In commemoration of the International Women's day which was few days back, I list out ten out of these great Nigerian women. These women have involved themselves in business leadership and management, politics, entertainment and humanitarian services. In no particular order these women are :
1. Folorunsho Alakija : In 2015 she was named second most powerful woman in Africa following Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and the 87th most powerful woman in the world by Forbes. Folorunsho Alakija is a business tycoon involved in the oil, fashion and printing industry. Alakija is the richest woman in Nigeria with an estimated net worth of 2.1 billion dollars. Alakija is also involved in philanthropy as she owns Rose of Sharon Foundation, a foundation that empowers widows and orphans. Alakija is a mother of four children from her marriage to Modupe Alakija. She has proven that women can lead in the business scenes also. She is one woman that our young girls should look up to.
2. Mo Abudu : She has been described by Forbes as 'Africa' s most successful woman'. Mo Abudu worked in the human resource unit of Esso Exploration and Production Nigeria Limited (now ExxonMobil) before opening her private human resource development company, Vic Lawrence and Associate Limited (VLA). Abudu is the Executive Producer & host of a TV talk show, Moments with Mo, which is the first syndicated daily talk show on African regional television. On July 11 2013, Mo Abudu launched Ebony Life Television, which is 'Africa's first Global Black Multi-Broadcast Entertainment Network'. She was also named by Forbes as the first woman in the African continent to own a pan-African TV channel. Abudu is a mother of two children.