My husband didn’t feel threatened by my success -Itunu Hotonu

Rear Admiral Itunu Hotonu, the first female Admiral in Africa recently stated that any woman who wants to rise and take up leadership positions while making impact will have to make the right kind of sacrifices.

Hotonu said this at the 2016 WISCAR Annual Mentorship and Leadership while speaking on the theme: ‘Women Rising: Transforming Leadership’.

According to her, women who have been privileged and blessed to attain leadership positions have consistently continued to be brave.

“As a woman, you already come from a position of disadvantage, not because you are disadvantaged, but the society chooses to decide that you are disadvantaged, they forget that Intelligent Quotient has no gender. All through my career, I always found myself in a room full of men. I was always told I had to be in the kitchen,” she said.

According to, Hotonu noted that despite the way the society had streamlined the role of the woman, she could rise against stereotypes and break boundaries.

Using herself as an example, she explained that she was constantly criticised and looked down upon, adding that she was not bothered because she knew what she wanted.

Hotonu added that taking one’s stand as a woman would attract feelings of hatred, but advised them not to be intimidated.

She explained that a woman could be successful, both at the home front and in her career, adding, however, that she must have a supportive husband to achieve that.

“I am Africa’s first female admiral today because my husband let me be. He said if you are not happy, I can’t be happy. He didn’t feel threatened by my success. The important thing is that he didn’t want an angry wife in the house,” Hotonu added.

She pointed that it was not true that men who allowed their wives to achieve would lose their respect as husbands, saying that an unfulfilled wife would be an angry woman.

Hotonu noted that a working mother had to be dexterous.

“She has to develop a working mechanism and also talk with her children, making them understand what she does,” she stated.

She posited that a woman must be able to balance everything she does.

On dealing with sexual harassment, Hutonu explained that it was important for a woman to establish what she stands for in a relationship.

“If you compromise at the beginning, it’s going to be difficult to stop compromising. To the glory of God, throughout my 30 years in the Navy, not once did I lobby for an assignment,” she added.

According to, she urged women to develop a thick skin against criticism and keep going until they get to the point that nobody could intimidate them again.



I am a writer, a journalist and phenomenal woman. I don't conform to societal stereotypes. I am passionate about women and the issues that plague womanhood in this part of the world. Engage and be awakened.

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1 Response

  1. queen says:

    Your husband is a real man ma. And you are an inspiring woman.

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