17 Dec Group Launches Autobiography of Mariam Yunusa, inspiring Young Girls
Tonia Atebe said the author wrote the autobiography to inspire “female folks primarily for my part of the country.”
The Mariam Ladi Yunusa foundation, on Tuesday, launched ‘On the Window Sill’, the autobiography of Mariam Yunusa, Adamawa State’s first female commissioner of housing and urban development.
In the book’s addendum, Mrs Yunusa’s children — Yahaya, Haruna, Ibrahim and Asma’u — said they stumbled on the book while sorting their mother’s personal belongings in her study.
“We have therefore decided to finish her story; giving all the readers a full experience of the life lived on earth by our lovely mother Mariam; alias Maa.”
In the 116-page book, late MLY aged 65, detailed what it was like growing up as a woman in a largely patriarchal society.
MLY elicited how she was able to rise through the ranks and break the glass ceiling set for female folks in her society.
While reading the preface of the book, Tonia Atebe said the author wrote the autobiography to inspire “female folks primarily from my part of the country.”
MLY narrated “…My story is also for all women who, though confronted with every reason to fail and give up on life, would be encouraged to know that they can pick up themselves and still achieve that dream of which they are so sure, but which may seem so far off and unrealistic from where they now stand,” Ms Atebe read in Abuja where the event held.
“I have written the story so that men may gain a better understanding of the women they meet either intimately as spouses or in the marketplace as colleagues.
“If you are a man holding this book in your hands, I commend you for crossing prejudice and age-old social norm of ignoring “what people will think” when they see you holding “a woman’s story.” Mighty man of valour, step up to your divine plate, God’s creation is waiting for the manifestation of your priesthood,” she added.
Haruna Yunusa one of the author’s sons,in his welcome address said reading the book, “you will be able to see her life through her eyes and understand more why she made some of the decisions that she did and appreciate how she lived her life.”
“Our mother attempts to pencil down her experiences through life with the hope that it inspires the others with a similar starts in life, and let them know that there is no glass ceiling, because of where you are from or what sex you are,” he said.
The foundation in memory of Mrs Yunusa, which sponsored the book launch, was said to be providing aid to young girls in northeast Nigeria to restore hope to them after years of insurgency in the region.
The only daughter of Mrs Yunusa who doubles as the programme director of the foundation, Asma’u Durnin, noted that the foundation was working on expanding its mandate to support girls’ post-secondary school with scholarships for tertiary education and acquisition of vocational skills.
Asma’u said the end goal is to “enable them to establish small and mid-size enterprises (SMEs) depending on their level of academic strength and interests.”
“It is our vision to restore our girls back to normalcy, rescue them from the trauma and support the creation of sustainable livelihoods, creating hope for a bright future and the restoration of healthy individuals, who can hold a sense of civic duty as exemplary leaders in their various communities and beyond,” Mrs Durnin noted.
Before retiring in 2015, Mrs Yunusa was the assistant director of education and principal of the federal government girls’ college, Yola, between 1984 and 1990 as well as the director of partners and inter-agency coordination branch at the United Nations human settlement programme (UN-Habitat), in Nairobi, Kenya.
At other times, she was the manager of the Africa Urban Agenda, an AU programme that seeks to strengthen partnerships between member states and their citizens and promote urbanisation for the attainment of the continent’s people-centred agenda 2063.