Abiyamo Tooto (True Mother)

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By Allen Sowore

Let me tell you a short story of a mentally challenged woman in Ilaje Local Government Area of Ondo State long time ago.  The woman in the riverside community gave birth to a beautiful girl and everyone around assumed she would be able to take care of the little girl.  Of course, she did until when the poor girl became two years old.

Tragedy struck when her mental status exacerbated and the vulnerable woman brought out a sharp knife and cut off one of her daughter’s ears. The community people mobilized and rescued the girl. But when she was asked why she did that,  she smiled and replied, “too many young girls look like my daughter and I have to put a mark to identify her among her peers.

The above story underscores the gesture of the wife of Ondo State Governor, Mrs Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, who took over the baby born by a mentally challenged woman at Yasera axis of Ikoya in Okitipupa Local Government Areas of the State.

I spoke to Mrs Morenike Alaka, Chairperson of Okitipupa Local Government Areas, she explained that it took more than seven hours to rescue the baby from the mentally challenged woman, who insisted that she gave birth to twins and that one has been taken away from her. Both the baby and her mother are now in the good care of the State Government.

For those who have been following the activities of the Ondo State First Lady, Mrs Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, you know, of course, that she’s eminently qualified as a true mother.

The concept of “Abiyamo Tooto” is more than being a good mom to your biological children alone.  It is not the ability and the willingness to get peed, pooped, and vomited upon. The concept is more than that! The true mother’s love is sacrifice. Sometimes, you do not have to bear a child before you choose to sacrifice yourself for those around you.

Since February 24th, 2017, when the present administration in Ondo State was inaugurated Mrs Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, wife of Ondo State Governor has not rested. From cancer awareness campaign to encouragement of girl child education, she has been so compassionate.

For instance, on 25th August, the wife of the Governor donated 100 tablets to girls trained in Information Communication Technology, (ICT). The same August, it was Solar For Girls Initiative. During the long holiday, Mrs Akeredolu introduced the Summer Tennis Clinic -an initiative to produce future Serena Williams in Ondo State.

Her Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign under the hegemony of Breast Cancer Association of Nigeria, BRECAN  has been launched in Kogi State, Lagos and other states of the Federation. Just like she doesn’t care for her children alone;  Mrs Akeredolu is ready and committed to driving ignorance about women health out of Nigeria.

This week when many wives of Chief Executives were preparing to attend celebrity weddings in Dubai and Singapore our own Arabirin Betty was busy on the streets of Akure, Okitipupa, and Ikare picking little children of the vulnerable and giving them the best Mother’s Cares.

Currently, a 200 Million  Crowd Funding for Mrs Kehinde Akingboye victim of breast cancer is ongoing.

This morning when I examined the activities of the wife of the Ondo State Government, Mrs Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, her kindness and good gestures, with all modesty I concluded that Mrs Betty qualifies for the Yoruba concept of “Abiyamo Tooto” as enunciated.

The Igbo people call it – Nne

Allen Sowore writes from Akure and is the Special Assistant to Ondo State Governor on New Media.


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