TALKSHOP (Feminine Column)
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TALKSHOP with Imabong “Ladipo-Sanusi

Child spacing: How desirable?

Last edition on this column, yours truly wrote on ‘Giving Up Everything for the Sake of the Kids” in which I focused on Victor and Victoria, a couple, with nine kids, whose first three came in the first three years of their marriage.

Eventually, the woman, Victoria, a medical doctor, had to leave her profession to nurture the children, who have now grown to be successful adults and parents in various fields of knowledge.

Interestingly, despite the success story, the new generation men and women see children as much as nine as a burden.

Today’s men and women say that as a medical doctor, the woman would have devised means of spacing the children. This, therefore, brings us to the issue of family planning, or better referred to as child spacing.

In a typical African setting, if you ask a man how many children he has, he feels reluctant to respond because, it is somehow a taboo to count or number the off springs, (which are believed to be gifts from God).

Funny enough, the African man forgets that in a modern world, demography statistics is vital to government planning for its citizenry. 

Gaping or allowing a fallow period between one birth and the next is simply known as child spacing. The method could also allow one to determine and produce the number of children he is able to cater for.

For instance, during the former military President Babangida’s era, four children were proposed for a typical Nigerian family. Whether Nigerians have conformed to this or not is a different tale.

No doubt, when you talk of family planning, the religiously inclined will be quick to quote… ‘be fruitful and multiply”, from the scriptures. But don’t forget that the responsibility of bringing up the child in the way pleasing to the Almighty, (for him to be responsible to the home and the community) lies in you and not spirits or angels.

Certainly, raising children can be one of the most challenging yet fulfilling; a frustrating yet rewarding task any human can attempt.

Is child spacing really necessary? According to Dr Hauwa Larai Goni, a public health physician, “child spacing is good for the womb and the body of the woman to recover fully after delivery”.

Speaking further, she said “this will help the baby’s breastfeeding optimally before the next pregnancy”.

Sadly, most couples do not discuss family planning.  It is like a no-go area coupled with the myths surrounding it. “My husband believes that a woman becomes promiscuous with child spacing”, Amina, 28, a mother of six, told TalkShop.

Pitifully, women like Aminat look quite wrinkled and older than their age because their bodies have sagged due to non stop delivery – un-spaced child birth.

Asking who bears the brunt of un-spaced children is crass. For some men, getting sozzled    after the birth of a desired sex (as it is in some culture, where only a male is a child, and the female is cheap and irrelevant) is the ultimate; the burden of rearing and educating the child is left to the mother, who some times vends for the children in thick and thin of times.

Rather than take up responsibility, such men build harem and take pride in having many children as assets.

What is the essence of bearing children you will starve of love? Children need love, wither and without. Anthropologist M .F. Ashely Montagu wrote: “what the human organism requires most for its development is a nutriment of love. The source of virtually all health is an experience of love, especially within the first six years of life”.

Children suffer serious crippling effects when exposed to inadequate diet of love. A loveless and selfish world, no doubt, is a strain in family bond. A place where love thrives regardless the status is a healthy environment.

Children need the best we can give, and the best affects their overlapping physical, intellectual and emotional needs.

What is best or at least good for children is and must be a human development priority for every home or government.

Making it such a priority is the surest proof that one is committed to ensuring the well-being of its people and stemming the tide of poverty, and suffering that threatens to engulf us all.

The truth is that ignorance kills silently and faster than a virus. Let us be responsible and cater for the children who are the future. Visit any family planning centre near you today, there you will be told what is best for you. 

Below is TalkShop’s sampled opinion on child-spacing:

“Ever since I found the right method for me, I am relieved. Child spacing has helped me   out of the fear of getting pregnant and avoiding unwanted pregnancy”, Nancy, 38, mother of six said.

“My husband believes women become promiscuous with child spacing methods”, Aminat, 28, mother of six explained. 

“I am still looking up to God for a child, so I don’t think family planning is for me”, declared Marie, 31.  

“Because of the economic crunch, I subscribe to family planning”, Kantudu, 40-year-old father of four and a grocery seller submitted.

“I have not found any method that is suitable for me. All the ones I have tried failed me. If I get any that is okay for me, I will stick to it. I believe child spacing is very good”, Aisha, 41, mother of nine confirmed.

“I have always dreamt of having two kids and I have got them now. Though my wife says three, I strongly recommend family planning, it allows you to give the best to your kids, Arch A.L, father of two noted.

Do you have any similar experience to share? Write, text or mail the following addresses, 08036161672 or Talkshop, The Mark Newspaper P. O. Box 319, Damaturu, Yobe State.



The demand for the pieces style cannot be over emphasized. Every long, short, three-quarter or full length styles seem to come in pieces. Why the rush for this?

The reason is not far-fetched - “that is vogue for you and for the designers, it is very easy to cut and put the pieces together”, Esther Ochai, a seamstress told STYLE.  

The streamlining of the hips and the knee curves makes the wearer have the desired figure 8 look. Trust the chics, the pieces style is a must have.

Good enough, no matter how plum, fat or slim one is, the style fits, because “adhering strictly to the wearer’s statistics is what makes the pieces style stand out”, Esther explained further.

In the pieces style, there is the fish style, which comes in two-piece, there are three, four pieces, six, and eight pieces.

These can be sewn in a full-length gown or skirt. Alternatively, it can be made up to the knee length. When made to the knee length, designers can, with creativity, extend it to a full length with flare, triangle, frills etc.

Woman’s Own

Life as a CP’s wife... I have so many responsibilities on my neck– Dorothy Ekpoudom

By Dele Ogunseemi

Princess (Mrs) Dorothy Ekpoudom, chairperson of Police Officers’ Wives Association (POWA), Oyo State,  true to her calling, has started mobilising police officers’ wives in the state to stand by their husbands.

A teacher, mentor and a disciplined lecturer, the amiable woman has moved several police officers’ wives to the lecture theatre where their entrepreneurship skills have been sharpened.

She is also known as a role model to serious thinking and hardworking police officers’ wives. “I have touched the lives of orphans, widows and settled some broken homes.

“I opened the police children school, Delta State Command and Police Secondary School in Calabar in 1993, while I was the vice principal. I also built shops for police officers’ wives to empower them,” she stated.

Born in Abak Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom state, Princess Dorothy Ekpoudoun attended the College of Education, Uyo. She had her first degree from the University of Jos, where she studied Science Education, and proceeded for a Master’s in Education. Today, she works with the Force Education Unit Abuja, as the Director of the South/Eastern Inspectorate.

She is a strong woman whose impact has been greatly felt in the states where her husband has served. These include: the Delta and Benue State Police Commands. She is currently trying to make an impact in Oyo State as she works tirelessly, urging every woman to remain as pillars behind their husbands.

“I always educate my women to go back to school. I believe that if the woman is educated, the family is educated and this will influence the children to be well disciplined.”

Princess Ekpoudoum added that she has been involved in the campaign that women should shun corruption and hold their heads high in the society.

“Do you know a policeman has three names to defend? First is his own name, family name and that of the Nigeria Police Force. So, why do they want corruption to spoil their names?”

While also urging the women to be hard working, she averred that, “they should not totally depend on their husbands. They should be able to supplement whatever their husbands can give. Also, I am going to build skill appreciation centre where our women will be taught skills which will enable them to support their husbands.”

Mrs. Ekpoudom stated: “I love POWA and I joined POWA when my husband was an Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP). POWA has exposed me. It has enabled me to love little children and make me to love my husband’s profession. Among the different organisations in the state today, POWA is the strongest and the foundation is discipline. POWA is going international. Some of us have learnt from POWA and this has enabled us to build a peaceful home.”

She added that one of her greatest experiences, which eventually turned to joy, was when armed robbers were killing policemen in Delta and Edo states. “Myself and some other executives in POWA and PCRC talked to our husbands and this led us to prayers and fasting. We also had a serious dialogue with the community leaders. Today, POWA is well-known in Delta and Edo states for the role we played during the crisis.”

WOMEN SCOOP  By Imabong ‘Ladipo-Sanusi

Why do women drive without their shoes on? 

Gone are the days, when Olufunmilayo Ransom-Kuti made history as the first Nigerian woman to steer the wheels. Today, women pilot planes, boats and drive all manners of engines. 

One unique thing is that when a woman is on the driver’s seat, check her feet and you will notice that most times, they are without shoes.

That is one peculiar thing with women, apart from the fact that most of them begin to learn driving all over again after leaving it (driving) for a while.

Hardly will you find a man driving without his shoes on. Why don’t women drive with their shoes on?

Memuna, who drives a Toyota Carina, says “I can’t drive with my shoes on because I did not learn driving with shoes”.  Atine owns a Honda Hala: “I don’t drive with shoes because I wear very high heels. I remove them while driving and wear them when I alight the car, she told Women Scoop.

Tatiana likens driving her BMW to peddling a sewing machine. “I learnt how to peddle and sew with the machine before driving. Since I cannot sew with my shoes on, I find it very difficult to wear shoes while driving too, not even when I put on slippers”, she explained to Women Scoop.          

However, Mariam, who controls a Mercedes Benz and a Toyota, says it is not only women who drive without shoes. “My former husband, up till this moment, does not drive with his shoes on. And I can still give more examples”, Mariam, who, herself does not drive with shoes, pointed out.

Driving with shoes on, for some like Chinasa, can make one lose the feel of the right object to press. “Without shoes, I know what the clutch, tottle or break feels like. I am afraid, if I put on shoes to drive, I may mistakenly step on the wrong thing”, she stressed.

Esther, a lecturer, who drives Toyota also says “driving with shoes makes me feel I am not the one controlling the car”.

The reasons are similar for Nana, Obum, Teni and  Susan, who are all learners. For them, it is comfortable driving without a foot wear.

Women, for what they are when it comes to fashion, wear various types of shoes including platforms, wedge, stilettos, straps and soles which could  discomfort the feet not to talk of wearing them to chauffeur an automobile.

For whatever reasons women drive without shoes, as long as there is no law against it, the most important thing is caution, safety and concentration. Avoid picking calls while driving. And remember if you don’t wear shoes, wear your seat belt while driving for safety reasons.

It is for the sake of such safety for the nation that one expects Patricia Olubunmi Etteh to step aside in the lower Chamber’s driver’s seat until the Idoko panel report is done with. Guilty or innocent, Etteh should realise that a kingdom divided against itself cannot stand. It is high time the House of  Representatives moved forward.

If you have any comments or contribution, write to, text, call or e-mail: P .O. Box 319, Damaturu, Yobe State, 08036161672 or

Thanks you for keeping a date with Women Scoop.   


Vol. 6 No. 15 November 17, 2007  EDITION...Of Truth and Excellence