Rt Hon Dame Esther Uduehi, KSG, PhD, FNIM, LSM, JP
Brief Profile of Rt Hon Dame Esther Uduehi, PhD Rt. Hon. Dame Esther K. Uduehi, PhD, KSG, LSM, FNIM is the Founder/ President of League of Women Voters of Nigeria (NILOWV). She had a distinguished career as a public servant and retired as a Permanent Secretary in the defunct Bendel State of Nigeria (now Edo/ Delta States) Before joining the Civil Service, she served first as a Graduate Teacher and rose to School Principal. As a Permanent Secretary, she served in various Ministries and Departments including Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Manpower Development and Establishments, Education, Commerce and Industry and Civil Service Commission. Dr Uduehi who was born in Obiaruku in Delta State of Nigeria, also served as the first appointed female Chief Executive of a Local Government Council in Nigeria as she superintended over the affairs of Orhionmwon Local Government Council (now split into about two and half Local Government Councils) in the then Bendel State, from 1978 to 1980. She was also the first female Chief Executive of a Broadcast Media in Nigeria, as Sole Administrator of the then Bendel Broadcasting Service in 1986. In and out of government, Dr Uduehi held various boardroom appointments in private and public quoted companies, either as Chairman or Director. A Fellow of Nigerian Institute of Management (FNIM), she also served as a member of Council. In addition, she is a life member of the Institute chartered, a member of the Royal Institute of Public Administration in the UK, and a member of the London Poetry Society. From 1999 to 2003, Dr Uduehi served as Special Adviser to the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as the Liaison with the House of Representatives. She was Chairman of the Governing Board of National Commission for Mass Literacy, Adult and Non-Formal Education from 2013 to 2015. Her vast experience in Gender and women studies, has seen her attend several global conferences such as the Nairobi World Conference and Forum on Women to mark the end of the Decade on Women in 1985, the Conference on the Role of Women in the North - South Dialogue organized by the then Council of Europe in Freiburg, Germany and Strasbourg, France in 1988, the Fourth World Conference and Forum on Women in Beijing, China in 1995 and the Beijing Plus Five, New York, in the year 2000 to name a few. Dr Uduehi holds a BA Hons English and Philosophy (1970) from the University of Lagos, a Post-Graduate Diploma in Educational Psychology and Curriculum Development from University of Glasgow, Scotland, (1976), M.Ed in Education Administration and Curriculum Development from Temple University, Philadelphia, USA (1980), and a PhD in Political Science and Public Administration from University of Benin, Nigeria (1985). She has also attended several management courses outside Nigeria. Dame Esther and her husband, Rt Hon Chevalier Damien Uduehi were the first Couple in Nigeria to serve as Permanent Secretaries in a Civil Service at the same time. In 2005, they were both honoured by the Pope with the Papal Knighthood of the Order of St. Gregory the Great. Dame Uduehi is also a Lady of the Order of Knights of St. Mulumba and she is a Traditional Chief with titles from several communities. Her passion for gender equality and women’s empowerment has seen her work closely with women all across Nigeria and in the Disapora. She is Founder/ CEO, Niger Delta Women’s Forum, Founder/Coordinator Peace and Good Governance Initiative (PEGGI), Charter President Zonta International Cub of Benin, Life member of the International Alliance of Women, Member of the New York Women Forum, Member of YWCA-founder some Branches. Life member of NCWS, life Member and Past Patron of Catholic Women Organization (CWO), Honorary Rotarian and Honorary Inner Wheel member. Patron of several Women and Youth Organizations In her capacity as President or Patron of many Women centered Organizations, Dame Dr Esther Uduehi has developed and managed a wide network of women across the globe. Dr Uduehi, a distinguished Public Speaker has been guest speaker in many places including NIPSS, Nigerian Institute of Management and some Universities. Dr Uduehi is well published. In addition to several published articles, Dr Uduehi has authored five books namely- ‘The Church of Benin City,’ ‘Called to be a Doctor,’ ‘Motivational Factors in the Nigerian Civil Service,’ ‘Gender Mainstreaming: The Nigerian Experience’ and ‘Preoccupations: An Anthology of Poems.’ A devout Catholic, Dr Uduehi is a member of the Catholic Women Organisation (CWO), where she also served as a National Patron. She is Patron to various Youth and Church lay organizations. A lay reader and a Church warden, she got married to Engr. Damien Bamidele Uduehi on 25th September, 1967. They are blessed with children and grandchildren. Dr Uduehi is a Politician and currently a member of the BOT of PDP. She is Chairman of the Peace and Conflict Resolution Committee of the BOT. She is a Papal Knight and in fact the current National President of All Papal Knights and Medalists in Nigeria - ( a group of Dedicated and Very Responsible Seniors citizens of high integrity in the Catholic Church who have been privileged to be honored by the Pope -they include Former and Serving Governors, Former and Serving Hon Ministers, Ambassadors, Permanent Secretaries, Corporate giants, dedicated and devout men and women who have served the Church and the Society, and more who have rendered dedicated service to the Church, the State and Humanity).