The Vice Chancellor,Nasarawa State University, Keffi, Nasarawa State, Professor Shamsudeen Amali, has said that the success of the current democratic dispensation in Nigeriais predicated on the effective use of cultural elements, which is predicated on adequate funding of the various cultural Institutions.
Stating this as the Guest Lecturer at the 3rd Annual Public Lecture organized by National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO),with the theme, “Culture, Good Governance, and Nigeria’s Democracy,” at the Yar’Adua Centre, Abuja, on Monday, December 17, 2012, Professor Amali noted that the effective and systematic use of the cultural elements, such as religion, fear of God, justice and rule of law, respect, leadership, honesty, sincerity, dedication, commitment, vision, industry, hardwork, courage, toughness, accountability, transparency, knowledge, discipline, sacrifice, kindness, tenderness, generosity, empathy, sensitivity, humanism, freedom, and patriotism, among others, through education, communication and various other fields of human activities, will enhance good governance.
Prof. Amali said such institutions to support financially, materially and morally for good democratic practice,include National Institute forCultural Orientation (NICO), universities, cultural ministries, artscouncils, and other such organs, to enable these Institutions create, practice, teach and spread the Nigerian brand of democracy, through all forms of activities and creativity, such as education, cultural festivals, theatre, play, music, dance, drama production and performances, visual arts, films, videos, books, languages, literature, verbal and non-verbal communication and other sources.
Observing that science, technology and arts are aspects of culture,he averred: “Science and technology should be used to promote good governance. Arts, theatre, drama, literature, languages, in addition to individual organizations, local, state and federal government should actively support and promote arts and culture. Nigeria, a nation rich in cultural diversities and similarity should use these abundant rich cultures for good democratic governance. In order for the contemporary Nigeria to richly enjoy good governance, we would have to know and select some good cultural aspects from traditional system of governance, such as family systems and values, honesty, peace and integrity and infuse them into the contemporary Nigerian democratic practices through the Councils, House of Assembly, Representatives and Senate. In effect if culture in its totality is consciously made to take its pride of place in Nigeria, our nation’s quest for good democratic governance could be achieved.”
Earlier in his remarks, the Executive Secretary, Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, expressed his delight for the attendance and asserted that the lecture became pertinentto explore the cultural dimensions for good governance and democratic ideals, in order to accord culture a pride of place in Nigeria.
Stating that the lecture was in line with NICO’s statutory mandate of effecting a sense of cultural direction into the citizenry, the ES said that the Institute has successfully used past editions to sensitize Nigerians to the strategic importance of culture, adding: “Our expectation is that at the end of this lecture by a distinguished and renowned university administrator, we would appreciate better, the need to embrace our culture, cherish its inherent values and accord it a place in all aspect all aspects of development agenda and stand tall among the comity of nations.”
The event, which was under the Chairmanship ofProfessor Emeka Nwabueze, Head, Department of Theatre and Film Studies, University of Nigeria, Nsukka,hadmany personalities in attendance, includingwife of the Vice Chancellor of Nasarawa State University, Keffi, (NSUK), Professor Ebele Amali, Deputy Vice Chancellor, NSUK, Prof. Shuaib Abdulraheem, the Executive Chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Lamorde, represented by Mr. Wilson Umijaren, Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, represented by AIG Suleiman Abba mni, Executive Chairman, Federal Character Commission, Professor Abdulraheem Oba, represented by Hon. Ibrahim Ladan, Secretary-General Nigerian Commission for UNESCO, Mrs. MagdaleneAnene-Maidoh,Former Chairman, House Committee on Culture and Tourism, Rt. Hon. KGB Oguakwa,Professor Mabel Evwierhomaof the Departmentof Theatre Arts, University of Abuja, National President, Society of Nigeria Theatre Artists (SONTA) and Head, Department of Theatre and Cultural Studies, NSUK, Professor Emmanuel Dandaura, Secretary-General, SONTA and Head, Department of Theatre and Performing Arts, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Professor Sam Kafewo, Artistic Director, Abuja National Carnival, Professor Bakare Ojo Rasaki, former Director-General, National Gallery of Art, Dr. Paul Chike Dike, former Executive Secretaries of NICO,Mrs. Victoria Agodo and Elder JB Yusuff, the CEO Worldwin Media, producers of Bush House Nigeria radio programme on Kapital FM 92,9, Mr. Michael Bush, among others.