Erelu Bisi Adeleye-Fayemi

Erelu the Beautiful Swan and our Personality of the Year

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Calling her the Beautiful Swan cannot be overemphasised, the First Lady of Ekiti State of Nigeria, Her Excellency, Erelu Bisi Adeleye-Fayemi has the qualities of a swan’s personality which is a melange of the symbol of light, love, romance, transformation, poetry, and passion for her young and is especially highly represented in ballets and operas.

In 1848, the white swan became the hero of Wagner’s Opera Lohengrin and other tales of The Swan Knight hence the fact that she is one of the world’s finest leaders, a feminist, activist, writer and policy advocate, philanthropist and the First Lady of Ekiti State of Nigeria, and a mother of the state that prides itself as a beautiful state on the hills and a fountain of knowledge and the land of honour.

Erelu emerged as the winner of the impressive Ekiti Summit Newspaper Personality of the Year -2020 after a rigorous screening process. Ekiti Summit Newspaper Leadership Award is a merit and value-based Award, a rigorous, screening process to recognize and celebrate leaders and people of influence that make our lives sublime as a people in the Ekiti State of Nigeria. We weighed the findings and ranked the tally to give us the order of the honour list.

She has influenced our lives in Ekiti communities for the better with great impacts and has done the most to influence the events of the year, especially in the campaign on Gender-Based Violence(GBV) which has gotten national commendations and she is also in the forefront in curbing COVID-19 Pandemic in Ekiti State among myriads of her great works Mrs Fayemi has clearly laid down legacies of development as the founder of Ekiti Development Foundation(EDF)and we appreciate her efforts as she continues to make sure that our Ekiti communities gravitate from potentials to prosperity in all ramifications of our life.

The aim of this EKITI SUMMIT AWARDS is to serve as an inspiration model to motivate, stimulate and encourage the youths and adults alike to achieve good success in their careers and calling through emulating and giving applause to inspiring true-life stories that sublime us in our quest to build a wholesome society upon which the pristine values of Ekiti people can be restored in our generation.

We have followed the records and achievements of Erelu Bisi Adeleye-Fayemi over the years, her pivotal roles in the involved in a range of policy advocacy, grassroots empowerment and social inclusion programs in Ekiti State. She led the campaign to enact a Gender-Based Violence Prohibition Law (2011, revised in October 2019), an Equal Opportunities Bill (2013) and an HIV Anti-Stigma Bill (2014). She continues to work on the implementation and sustainability of these initiatives as First Lady of Ekiti State for the second time.

A lot has been written about Erelu Bisi Adeleye-Fayemi and much would still be written about her superlative achievements and legacies. Nevertheless, this is the biographical vignette of the woman; we can call the institution our Person of the Year, according to her website… AboveWhispers.com

Her Excellency, Erelu Bisi Adeleye-Fayemi, First Lady of Ekiti State of Nigeria

Bisi Adeleye-Fayemi is a feminist activist, writer and thinker. She has many years of experience as a gender specialist, social entrepreneur, policy advocate, and social change philanthropy practitioner. She co-founded the African Women’s Development Fund, (AWDF) – the first Africa-wide grant-making fund, and served as the first Executive Director from 2001 to 2010. AWDF has played a key role in the promotion of feminist movement building in Africa.

She is currently Principal Partner, Amandla Consulting, specializing in leadership development for women, and she runs an online community called Abovewhispers.com. She is a UN Women Nigeria Senior Advisor and was recently appointed as a Visiting Senior Research Fellow at King’s College, University of London.

When her husband Dr Kayode Fayemi took office as Governor of Ekiti State, Nigeria, October 16th 2010-2014, Bisi became actively involved in a range of policy advocacy, grassroots empowerment and social inclusion programs in Ekiti State. She led the campaign to enact a Gender-Based Violence Prohibition Law (2011) an Equal Opportunities Bill (2013) and an HIV Anti-Stigma Bill (2014).

She serves on the Executive Boards of the African Women’s Development Fund, and the Global Fund for Women USA. She is Chair of the Advisory Council of the Nigerian Women’s Trust Fund and also serves on the Governing Council of Elizade University, Nigeria. Bisi is the author of ‘Speaking for Myself’: Perspectives on Social, Political and Feminist Activism in Africa (2013), ‘Speaking above a Whisper’, (2013) an autobiography and ‘Loud Whispers’ (2017) She also co-edited ‘Voice, Power and Soul’, with Jessica Horn (2008) a compilation of images and stories of African Feminists.




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