The Dr. Barclays Ayakoroma-led National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO) has flagged-off the inauguration of Cultural Clubs in Secondary Schools in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, FCT. The clubs are aimed at fostering a sense of cultural awareness and identity in our youths, in order for them to appreciate our cultural diversity.
The Executive Secretary, variously represented by Senior Officers of the Orientation and Cultural Affairs Department of NICO, said in his address, that the decision to establish the Clubs was to make the youths appreciate Nigerian cultural heritage. This move, he asserted, will help encourage the appreciation of our languages, dresses, music, cuisines, and other cultural values at every level of social interaction.
In this first phase of the exercise, about ten (10) Secondary Schools were covered. Mallam Mohammed Abdulkareem, Vice Principal (Administration), of one of the Schools, was full of praises for the NICO initiative, describing it as a welcome idea at a trying time for Nigeria, which is currently going through transformation in the aegis of re-branding.
“Given the diverse background of the student population in his School,” Mallam Abdulkareem hoped “the message would be well driven home.”
Government Junior Secondary Schools, in Kuje, Jikwoyi, Gwarimpa, Wuse, Garki, Kubwa, and Karu, were some of the Schools that have had the NICO Cultural Club established. Government Junior Secondary School, Tudunwada; Arewa Basic School, Wuse; and Tophill Primary and Basic Schools, are also among others in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), that have embraced the concept.
By this development, Dr. Ayakoroma has matched word with action. He had earlier at different fora, intimated the press on the Cultural Clubs initiative as one of the Institute’s programmes and plan of action to help inculcate cultural values in Nigerian youths, believing that they will hardly deviate from habits formed through such early cultural orientation, when they get older.
“In order to catch them young, NICO will be initiating Cultural Clubs in Schools to start the moral re-engineering of the nation’s youths early. Through this initiative, Nigeria’s music, dress, cuisine, and other healthy ways of life would be imparted on them,” he said.

Consequently, “the Institute would start holding an Annual NICO Secondary Schools Cultural Fiesta, where Cultural Clubs would compete for prizes,” the NICO Executive Secretary assured.
The next phase of the exercise for another set of Schools will take place shortly, and this will continue until Schools in Abuja and the entire FCT are covered.
It is worthy of note that the Lagos Zonal Office has since inaugurated its Cultural Clubs. Efforts for same at all NICO Zonal Offices across the country have reached advanced stages.
Gillowei James (Snr.)
Media Asst. to the ES