Nigerians have been called upon to see the National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO) as an agency pursuing corrective measures to promote the cultures and traditions of the people, to guarantee the desired future for the youths, or else the society would be precipitating towards anarchy.
The Honourable Commissioner for Education & Human Capital Development, Kwara State, Alhaji Raji Mohammed, who stated this when the NICO North-Central Zonal Head, Mr. Ibrahim Lawal, paid a courtesy visit on him, noted that anyone who is a vector of culture would see the heritage of the people as very paramount to educational programmes.
Alhaji Mohammed, who was optimistic that the decay in the cultural structure has been the cause of the social vices in the society today, compared the present situation with what it was, saying that gone are the days when the society was always cautious of how people became rich, not to contravene the societal norms and values.
He said NICO is a corrective and supportive parastatal to his Ministry and the younger generation, especially, and unequivocally pledged the Ministry’s continuous support because, according to him, the education sector needs NICO than any ever.
The Commissioner commended the foresight of the Executive Secretary, Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, in carrying out laudable programmes to restore the society from another generational enslavement, saying that our future lies in the hands of our children and they should be given good orientation on our cultural heritages to guarantee a peaceful society.
Speaking earlier, the NICO North-Central Zonal Head, Mr. Ibrahim Lawal, expressed appreciation to the Honourable Commissioner, for the support the Zonal Office had been enjoying from the Ministry, specifically for the Nigerian Indigenous Language Programme and the establishment of NICO Cultural Clubs in Secondary Schools in the state.
The Zonal Head informed that the Institute runs diploma and postgraduate diploma programmes in Cultural Administration at its Training School in Lagos, and trains cultural development officers, motivators and communicators, who would be rooted in Nigerian cultural practices and fine-tune a way of integrating culture into the educational system in the country by developing cultural curriculum at every stage of our educational system.
Mr. Lawal further explained that the Institute is also on a sensitization mission to re-orientate government officials and political office-holders on the values of our cultural heritages and develop cultural materials for national and international consumption to sustain our cultural diplomacy with other countries.
He said, the Institute does not only carry out research, but that it initiates, sponsors and documents viable cultural heritages of the people, and solicited the collaboration of the Ministry and tertiary institutions to carry out a programme, “Building the Culture of Morality,” for the youths to re-awaken the consciousness of honesty in them.
According to him, the cultural approach will curtail the menace of cult activities on campuses and also protect innocent students from being initiated, a thing that contravenes our cultural heritage, and promised to take advantage of the Students’ Week, to organise the workshop, which will be spiced by cultural groups activities to create a mini-cultural festival.
This, he said, will help bring students together from various cultural backgrounds, make them appreciate their differences, and develop respect for their cultural norms and values, stating that the programme will extended, in due course, to tertiary institutions in other states in the zone.
In attendance were the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Alhaji L.O. Alabi, Director, Personnel, Finance and Supply, Alhaji Ahmed Yusuf, and other senior staff of the Ministry.
North central Zone