Omeri Advocates Military-Media Collaborations To Fight Insurgency

Written by Dr. Barclays Posted in nico news

Mike Omeri 150x150The Director-General, National Orientation Agency (NOA), Mr. Mike Omeri has said if relevant stakeholders like the military and media practitioners fail to constantly collaborate in the fight against insurgency, not only will the nation deny itself of victory over terrorism but the result will also pose untold danger for the country.

Omeri made this known, Thursday, 26th November, 2015 at the NOA headquarters, Old Federal Secretariat, Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, while giving an opening remark at a one-day seminar, organized by the agency on the theme: “Do the Right Thing: Close the Security Gaps”: The Role of the Media in Security Reporting in Nigeria.

The NOA boss, who said there was need for understanding and synergy between security agencies and the media in the reportage of activities of insurgents in the country, maintained that such must be done while conscious efforts were made to place national interest at the fore of all media reports.

His words:: “The global threat of terrorism is resonating in several parts of the world and we are inundated with media reports emanating from various parts of the world on the carnage and needless loss of lives and property. It is indeed time to pause and consider the roles that various sections of the public ought to play in the fight against terror so as to close the various seeming gaps that may have inadvertently been created and may pose untold danger if not checked.”

“One key area requiring keen alertness on the part of all stakeholders is the prevailing need, at this time more than ever, to protect critical national information and common facilities including sources and channels of food and water supplies. All hands must be on deck to support and compliment the heroic efforts of our military by remaining vigilant and availing security agencies of useful information about suspicious characters, items and movements in our immediate environments.”

According to him, the commitment of the Federal Government and the nation’s armed forces towards achieving victory over insurgents has been underscored by stakeholders, as President Muhammadu Buhari has issued a deadline of December, 2015 for the successful completion of the anti-insurgency war.

He however debunked the claim that the security challenge confronting Nigeria today is a true reflection of who Nigerians are or their cherished values as a people, stressing that all must strive to assert that Nigerians are peace-loving, hospitable and disciplined people and must collectively build trust between communities and strong synergy among stakeholders to give support to the fight against insurgency.

Present at the occasion were former Director-General of NOA and Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), Dr. Tony Iredia, who delivered the lead paper; President, Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Abdulwaheed Odusile; Professor Emmanuel Dandaura of Nsarawa State University, Keffi, who represented the President, Nigerian Institute of Public Relations(NIPR); and the Artistic Director, National Troupe of Nigeria, Mr. Akin Adejuwon, among others.

The Executive Secretary, National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, who was unavoidably absent due to the exigency of office, was represented by the Director, Orientation and Cultural Affairs, Mr. Alex Omijie.

Caleb Nor

Corporate Affairs Unit

NICO, Abuja

Media Studies Conference Opens In Ibadan

Written by Dr. Barclays Posted in nico news

A 2-Day International Conference with the theme, “Media Studies in Nigeria: Genesis and Detours,” in honour of foremost Nigerian film scholar, Professor Hyginus Ekwuazi of the University of Ibadan, Ibadan, opens Thursday, 26th November, 2015 at the Institute of African Studies, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria.

A statement by the Conference Conveners, Professor Onookome Okome of the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada, and Professor Marcel Okhakhu of the University of Benin, Benin, Nigeria, indicated that two keynote lectures will be delivered after the opening ceremony by Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, Executive Secretary, National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), Abuja, Nigeria, and Professor Jonathan Haynes of Long Island University, Brooklyn Campus, New York, USA.

According to the release, Ayakoroma will be speaking on the topic, “Instant Miracles, Poetic Justice, ‘To God Be the Glory’: Reflections on Developments in Nollywood;” while Haynes will focus on “Nollywood and Nollywood Studies.”

It will be recalled that, at the centre of the boom in media scholarship in Ibadan was the then young scholar, Hyginus Ekwuazi, who was just making a radical transition from the Department of English to the Department of Theatre Arts, the premiere centre for performance studies in Nigeria.

After a BA degree in English in 1978, Ekwuazi came to media studies in extraordinary circumstances, taking a doctoral degree in media history and criticism in the Department of Theatre Arts, the first of its kind in Nigeria; and as part of his training in the science and art of cinema, he was an exchange student at the University of Pennsylvania, USA and enrolled as a student at Temple University, Philadelphia, USA.

Soon after his PhD, he took a position in Ibadan and since then, he has tutored and mentored a school of students, many of whom obtained PhDs in media studies and have gone out to teach in other Nigerian universities and elsewhere in the world.

But he is not just a scholar of film, with deep knowledge in the areas of film criticism and theory; his PhD dissertation, which he submitted at the University of Ibadan, remains the reference point for anyone interested in the history of film in Nigeria.

Ekwuazi was the pioneer Director of the Nigerian Film Institute (NFI), which is housed in the Nigerian Film Corporation (NFC); it is the first Institute of its kind to offer courses leading to Diploma and the BA degree in the practice of filmmaking in Nigeria. Kenneth Gyan, the director of the brilliant film, B for Boys, graduated from this Institute.

Professor Ekwuazi, who also served as the Managing Director of the Nigerian Film Corporation for a term of four years, has produced, written and directed a number of films both as the Managing Director of NFC and as an independent producer.

The media conference and the book of essays that will be based on it, celebrate the scholar, poet, friend and teacher extraordinaire, Professor Hyginus Ekwuazi, as a small number of essays will be devoted to the role that he played in the making of the Ibadan School of Media Studies.

© Nico news

Encomiums As NICO’s Finance Director Retires From Active Service

Written by Dr. Barclays Posted in nico news

The Director, Finance and Accounts at the National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), Mr. Godson Ordu has retired from active service amidst encomiums from Management, Staffers of the Institute, as well as members of the public for the indelible marks he left in office.

The encomiums were showered on him at an event organized to send him forth on Monday, 23rd November, 2015 at the Institute's Head Office, located at No. 23, Kigoma Street, Wuse Zone 7, Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, which reflected his conduct, commitment and passion for humanity as well as dedication to duty.

For the Executive Secretary of NICO, Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, Ordu may have retired from active service but he remains part of NICO; that the Institute still needs his wealth of experience to move forward, saying he never had any cause to regret making him (Ordu) Director of Finance and Accounts because he did not disappoint NICO.

His words: "When I came on board, we had only three directors and one floating director, who had no portfolio; and I reasoned that we can open up the place and we created five departments: Finance & Accounts, Admin & Human Resources, Research & Documentation, and Orientation & Cultural Affairs, and Training School; and that reduced tension in NICO. As at that time, Ordu was the Chief Accountant and when I saw the level of commitment and zeal in him, I decided that he needed to be encouraged by elevating him to Director, Finance and Accounts. Even though some people did not like it, I did it in the interest of the organization; because I had seen him as part of the winning team and the best thing was to give him that encouragement."

"As at that time, I inherited most of you when there was no money to pay your salaries and I said you people may have to go because I never wanted to be bothered with people asking for their salaries. But all thanks to Ordu because, as at that time, I didn’t know where Budget Office, Accountant-General, Auditor-General or Director of Budget's offices were. Ordu was going to Budget Office single handedly until we got your salaries to start running. So, you have Mr. Godson Ordu to thank," he said.

dfa2Continuing, Ayakoroma said most times, people do not appreciate something they have until they lose it, stressing that some persons did not appreciate Mr. Ordu but now that he is leaving, they will appreciate him just as he prayed that although Ordu has retired, he will always work with the Institute on consultancy basis.

Also speaking, former Executive Secretary of NICO, Elder J.B. Yusuf remarked that Ordu remains one of his success stories in NICO, informing: “He is one of my projects in NICO that I can say was successful. I know how hard working he was. When I did a re-organization, it created some problems; but I knew that with him in Accounts, NICO will have no problem. And I am very happy that when I left, the current ES did not change him because some of the qualities I found in him, I know he also found them in him.”

On his part, the Director, Orientation and Cultural Affairs, Mr. Alex Omijie said he joined NICO the same time with Mr. Ordu and has taken time to study him to know that the secret behind his success story is loyalty, stressing that, any staff who wants to succeed in his chosen carrier in NICO needs to study the life of someone who has been successful, and that Mr. Ordu was a very loyal and dedicated staff.

dfa1His words: "If you want to climb to the top, it is important that you are loyal. Mr. Ordu was loyal and that accounts for the height he attained. We are celebrating a man who was committed, dedicated to his job and upright even in the face of challenges."

The Coordinator, NICO Training School, Abuja Study Centre, Dr. Regina Onouha also described Mr. Ordu as a man, who was not only committed and dedicated to his duties but had also touched many lives and prayed that God will lead him through his future life endeavours.

For the man who takes over as Head of Finance and Accounts, Mr. Alfred Ogbe Herbert, Mr. Ordu had been a mentor, a man with the drive to achieve, a man who does not look at his current state to achieve what he wants, saying he does not allow his environment to deny him the opportunity to achieve what he wants to achieve.

It will be recalled that the erstwhile Director of Finance and Accounts, National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), Mr. Godson Igbo Ordu, born on 22nd November, 1955, joined the Institute in 1993, and retired after attaining the mandatory age of 60years on Sunday, 22nd November, 2015.

Caleb Nor

Corporate Affairs Unit

NICO, Abuja

NICO Students Advocate Use Of Culture As Instrument For Regional Integration

Written by Dr. Barclays Posted in nico news

Students undergoing the one-year Postgraduate Diploma in Cultural Administration (PGDCA) programme of National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO) Training School, Lagos have emphasized the centrality of cultural diplomacy as a veritable instrument for achieving meaningful integration among Member States of regional bodies in the various continents of the world.

This was a major submission that ran through the papers presented by members of Panel Four (4) at the “Seminar in Cultural Diplomacy” on Wednesday, 28th October, 2015, at Lecture Hall II of the NICO Training School, National Theatre Annex, Iganmu-Lagos, an idea course idea initiated by the course lecturer, Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, NICO’s Executive Secretary and Visiting Associate Professor at Nasarawa State University, Keffi (NSUK).

In his paper, entitled, “The Role of the European Union (EU) in Sustaining Cultural Integration among Member States,” Mr. Ifeanyi Nwaomu noted that the establishment of the 28-Member States community was aimed, among other things, to give Member States an opportunity for free trade and movement, as well protecting and imposing tariffs on non-EU Members, among others.

He contended that the EU has used the instrumentality of Grand Tour of Europe, UEFA Champions League, the Euro as a unified legal tender, festivals such as the Paris Grand Parade, Avignon and Edinburgh Festivals, as vehicles for promoting not only cultural but also socio-economic and political integration within the geographical expression referred to as Europe.

Mr. Olushola Adeyemi, in his presentation, “The African Union as a Tool for Sustaining Socio-Economic Development and Cultural Diplomacy,” argued that the transformation of the African Union (AU) has repositioned it as a stronger administrative mechanism with greater powers of intervention in the affairs of Member states than its predecessor.

The AU, he continued, has used its leverage to create and maintain peace-keeping force for intervention in crisis-ridden areas and as well attract the services of medical practitioners and health facilities.

On the other hand, Mr. Olusola Aina, delivering a paper, entitled, “The Role of Culture in the Development of the Asian Tigers,” averred that the practice of Confucianism, “an existential and political philosophy that preaches values of openness, loyalty, hard work, respects for constituted authority, among others, gave room for a corrupt free society.”

To him, ethnic homogeneity, racial and religious harmony, and the level of technological advancement the Asian Tigers have attained are rooted in their cultures, noting that high rate of school enrolment, the quality and standardisation of exported products as well as slow growth of controllable population all account for their economic development indices.

He further posited that the exportation of Korean films, information and communication gadgets, like Acer and LG, coupled with the export of their local sports, especially Taekwondo are instruments used by the Asian Tigers to achieve their cultural diplomacy objectives.

In his remarks, the Executive Secretary, Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, the Lecturer in-Charge of the Cultural Diplomacy course, commended the presenters, disclosing that seminar was a practical experience for students, which is a display of their knowledge of Cultural Diplomacy, as against the theories learnt in class.

In attendance were the Director, NICO Lagos, Liaison Office, Mr. Louis Eriomala; Director, NICO Training School, Lagos, Mrs. Brigitte Yerima; Deputy Director/Special Assistant to the ES, Mr. Law Ikay Ezeh; an external resource person for Yoruba Language in the Training School, Mr. Abayomi Lagada; President, National Association of Nigerian Theatre Arts Practitioners (NANTAP), Mr. Tunde Obalana, other students and staffers of the Institute.

Meanwhile, those interested in attending the NICO Training School for the 2015/2016 Academic Session can download the application form from the Institute’s website: www.nico.gov.ng or visit any of the NICO Offices in Abuja, Akure, Enugu, Gombe, Ibadan, Ilorin, Katsina, Lagos, Minna, Owerri, Yenagoa and Yola to collect the form.

Lanre Arepo

Corporate Affairs

NICO TS, Lagos

SONTA Hosts Maiden Meeting Of Theatre Professors In Abuja

Written by Dr. Barclays Posted in nico news

OdodoThe Society of Nigeria Theatre Artists (SONTA) is set to organize the maiden edition of meeting of All Professors of Theatre Arts in Nigerian universities, beginning from 1st-3rd November, 2015.

An email forwarded to Nico News, dated 17th October, 2015 and signed by the SONTA President, Professor Sunday Enessi Ododo, says the opening ceremony of the meeting, which aims at ventilating and garnering ideas towards perceived structural stresses in the orientation of the Theatre Arts curriculum and emerging policy thrusts, will hold at the Tetfund Building, Faculty of Arts, University of Abuja Main Campus on Monday, 2nd November, 2015.

The email, which states that the meeting will be addressing specific issues including the place of Theatre/Dramatic/Performing Arts, reads in part: "Issues to be interrogated here include: 'domiciliarization' (The NUC is of the view that Media Arts, Film, Film Studies belong to the Social Sciences!); the intent and content/orientation of the curriculum; in the case of film/film studies for which as at now, there is no benchmark, what should inform the intent and content/orientation of such benchmark/s, the specific nature of the production equipment resources with how to cue such into and/or derive them from the benchmarks."

Another issue to be addressed is that of Theatre Arts-Industry interface, that, "Here, issues to be interrogated are the seemingly unspanable chasm between academic industry; the imperative for industrial attachment as one of the integral components of Theatre/Dramatic Arts programme; modalities for integrating the industrial attachment provision ( where it already exists) into the training structure of the ITF ( Industrial Training Fund) – which will, in effect mean that what applies to other industry-related disciplines will apply to Theatre/Dramatic/Performing Arts: that both students and supervisors on IT automatically become eligible for the statutory stipend paid by ITF."

Also, the meeting is expected to come up with a template for professorial assessment in theatre arts, which will be in addition to what may be the general criteria of individual universities and a communiqué will be issued, which will form the basis for a dialogue with the Nigerian Universities Commission (NUC).

Meanwhile, despite critical challenges envisaged, the leadership of SONTA remains committed to hosting the meeting and has assured of a secured accommodation arrangement on rebate with Cossy Resort Hotel, Plot 9/10, Customs Layout, opposite University of Abuja Teaching Hospital, Gwagwalada, Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.

In all, about sixty three (63) Professors of Theatre Arts from Nigerian Universities are expected to be in attendance while five (5) other known authorities in the theatre arts profession, including the Executive Secretary of the National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, an Associate Professor with Nasarawa State University, Keffi (NSUK) are scheduled to be observers at the meeting.

Caleb Nor

Corporate Affairs Unit

NICO, Abuja-FCT

NICO’s Seminar In Cultural Diplomacy – An Expose On How To Showcase Nigeria To The World

Written by Dr. Barclays Posted in nico news

Nigeria is not just a geographical entity with abundant oil wealth, hampered by security challenges and under-achievements but has, unarguably, the highest conglomeration of people in Africa with diverse and rich cultural heritages to excite the rest of the world.

This was focal point of the maiden edition of a 2-Day Seminar on Cultural Diplomacy organised by the National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO) Training School held in the Lecture Hall II of the Institute’s Training School complex, National Theatre Annex, Iganmu-Lagos, beginning from Tuesday, 27th October, 2015.

Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, NICO’s Executive Secretary and Visiting Associate Professor, Nasarawa State University, Keffi (NSUK), who is the course lecturer that initiated the event, kick-started the seminar sessions, informing the August audience that the NICO Seminar on Cultural Diplomacy is designed to improve the public presentation proficiency of students in order to enhance their competence as cultural communicators before the media and other culture stakeholders.

The first paper, presented by Emovwerha Ofuafo, entitled, “Promoting Nigeria’s International Relations through Theatre: Towards a Practical Approach,” emphasized that theatre is an indispensable tool for the promotion of cultural diplomacy in the sense that it can be used to express positive ideas, beliefs and values to promote the desired image for Nigeria.

He stated that, theatre is pivotal in the pursuit of an aggressive foreign policy for Nigeria in the 21st century but that the repositioning of the theatre industry must be done to meet the dynamics of the country’s foreign policy in a modern, globalised world.

Joan Funmilola Owan net took the podium to speak on “Drama as a Tool for Social Change and Cultural Diplomacy in Nigeria,” in which she posited that, the world is a stage and drama is that vital tool used to showcase who we are, what we believe, and what we do to the rest of the world, adding that, drama, as exemplified by Hollywood, is a soft power, a persuasive means of influencing others to appreciate another country’s interests and respond accordingly.

Owan stressed that Nigeria too can use Nollywood, its film industry, as a veritable tool to unite the country and effect desired changes in the areas of internal security, economic productivity and social cohesion, furthermore noting that, we can rebrand Nigeria by promoting our indigenous languages, Nigerian foods and beverages, as well as Nigerian dresses and local fabrics.

Another presenter, Flora Sodje, who talked on “Dance Tradition as a Tool for National Development and Cultural Diplomacy,” stressed that dance is a unique form of artistic expression, which employs a universal body language that everyone understands, and that while the purpose of dance is to entertain, it is so powerful that one is likely to be interested in a people if you love their dance.

She therefore emphasized that, dance is a useful vehicle of cultural diplomacy, which has the power to bring recognition to particular cultures and secondly, foster understanding of the traditions, values, history, language and general ways of life that is important to the engaging parties.

This is the maiden edition of an all-engaging Seminar on Cultural Diplomacy attracted culture experts from the academia and culture organisations, including Otunba Tunji Sotimehin of the Department of Creative Arts, University of Lagos, Mr. Shaibu Husseini of the National Theatre, Mr. Tunde Obalana (National President, NANTAP), Mr. Louis Eriomala (Director, NICO Liaison Office, Lagos), Mrs. Brigitte Yerima (Director, NICO Training School, Lagos), Mr. Abayomi Lagada (Resource Person, NICO Training School), and Mr. Law Ezeh (Lecturer in NICO Training School and Special Assistant to Executive Secretary), among others.

Anthony Okafor                                                                   

Corporate Affairs Unit                                                                                  

NICO Training School, Lagos

Parents Called Upon To Encourage Use Of Nigerian Indigenous Languages

Written by Dr. Barclays Posted in nico news

ESThe Executive Secretary/CEO of the National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, has noted that the trend where children only learnt in English language in the school system in Nigeria needs to change, urging parents to make conscious efforts in ensuring that their children are taught Nigerian indigenous languages at home.

Ayakoroma, also a Visiting Associate Professor to Nasarawa State University, Keffi (NSUK), who was speaking on an African Independent Television (AIT) programme, ‘IMPACT 360 with Kambili,’ warned that failure to do the above would mean that, children would lose their identity because language transmits culture, the totality of the way of life of a people, which includes their entire value system, belief system, dress culture, language, food, architecture, arts and craft, and so on.

The erudite scholar and cultural administrator averred that, lack of political will on the part of government in policy implementation as being responsible for the decline of indigenous cultural practices and values, while also opining that lack of pride in culture on the part of individuals has contributed immensely to the decline of Nigeria’s indigenous cultures, stating that the National Policy on Education stipulates, among other things, the use of the indigenous language of the immediate environment in the teaching of students in the first three years of primary education but that the policy is yet to implemented by the relevant bodies.

Citing examples of countries like the United Kingdom, Germany, China, Japan, Ukraine, where foreign students are made to study their indigenous languages before they start their educational programmes, he opined that the same approach needs to be taken in Nigeria, recalling that, back in the days, pupils from primary one to six were made to study their indigenous languages in the subject, Vernacular.

Speaking further, Prof Ayakoroma decried the lack of pride by Nigerians in their cultures, stating that if only Nigerians would transfer the love they have for indigenous foods to other aspects like dress, arts and craft, language, music, indigenous sports, then the country would be the better for it.

According to him, the above would result to what he termed, ‘Marketing our Indigenous Cultural Tourism,’ where Nigeria’s indigenous cultural products would be on display in shops at every entry point of the country: airports, bus terminals, seaports, as is obtainable in countries like Brazil, China, Israel, Indonesia, South Africa, Kenya, Ghana, and Gambia, among others that are favourably disposed to their culture and are therefore marketing same through cultural tourism.

In the same vein, the NICO Executive Secretary expressed concern with the infusion of foreign ideas into Nigeria’s cultural festivals, noting that too much foreign culture contact has impacted our festivals, resulting in a lot of foreign carnival trends taking over the rich array of our indigenous cultural heritage.

He therefore urged that restraint should be applied to ensure that our festivals are truly indigenous, which would enable our people identify with their unique cultures, while the foreigners will also see unique things in these festivals other than what they are familiar with, thus attracting international tourists and in essence attracting foreign exchange for the country.  

While advocating the promotion of Nigeria’s cultural tourism through the indigenization of our festivals, preservation of indigenous languages and projection of indigenous products, Ayakoroma called for the abolition of negative cultural practices like the Osu Cast System in Eastern Nigerian and communities in all other parts of the country where such or other forms of negative cultural practices are still being observed, noting that these outdated negative practices which are not relevant in modern Nigeria are some of the things painting the country’s culture in bad light in the eyes of other cultures of the world.

He however indentified paucity of funds as a major factor militating against the Institute’s effective orientation, re-orientation and sensitization of Nigerians towards embracing their culture, taking pride in identifying with their indigenous languages, dresses and other cultural aspects, to enhance Nigeria’s cultural development.

Jonathan N. Nicodemus

Corporate Affairs

NICO HQ, Abuja

NICO Training School Students Set For Seminar Presentation In Abuja

Written by Dr. Barclays Posted in nico news

BARCLAYSPostgraduate students in Cultural Administration at the National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO) Training School, Abuja Study Centre, are set for their seminar presentations in Cultural Diplomacy, as part of the requirements leading to the award of a Postgraduate Diploma in Cultural Administration.

A seminar presentation schedule released in Abuja by the course lecturer, Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, who is NICO’s Executive Secretary/CEO as well as Visiting Associate Professor at the Nasarawa State University, Keffi (NSUK), reveals that the seminar will take place from Wednesday, 21 October to Thursday, 22 October, 2015 at the Staff Assembly Ground, NICO Headquarters, Abuja by 10am.

Already, the class, which is made up of 23 students have been divided into four (4) presentation panels with two (2) panels presenting on different topics each day, and members of staff are expected to share in the seminar experience.

Baring last minute changes, those presenting on Wednesday, 21st October on the first panel are: Uruemu Okorodudu, Anastasia Maigari, Ramatu Abdullahi, Blessing Mkpa, Francis Iba and Finelady Mushinwa; while Nshokibe Ojie, Iyadunni Adelabu-Idris, Jane Anigala, Blessing Irabor, and Bernard Ayakoroma will present on the second panel.

The third panel presenting on Thursday, 22nd October, 2015 has Olusegun Iroko, Michael Ekoko, Herbert Alfred, Maria Okpuzor, Abdulmalik Salihu, Aigbodion Ogbuan, and Susan Duru; just as Emuobonuviesa Nabofa, Zainab Lamido, Sarauniya Nakwada and Franca Okoro will be presenting on the fourth panel same Wednesday.

It will be recalled that NICO, which is the apex and leading cultural training institute in Nigeria has the mandate to, among others, train cultural workers to be grounded in Nigerian cultural practices, realities and philosophies towards national development.

Caleb Nor

Corporate Affairs Unit

NICO, Abuja

Every Nigerian Woman Needs To Promote Indigenous Languages - Onuoha

Written by Dr. Barclays Posted in nico news

Assistant Director and Coordinator, National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO) Training School, Abuja Study Centre, Dr. (Mrs.) Regina Onuoha, has called on Nigerian women, especially mothers, to play the critical role of promoting Nigeria’s indigenous languages, by teaching their children to learn and speak their indigenous languages.

Dr. Onuoha made this call at Radio House, Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, recently, while speaking to Emerald Donald, the Producer of a Radio Nigeria Programme, “Every Woman,” airing on Kapital 92.9FM, every Sunday by 7:00pm.

Fielding questions from the anchor person on the programme, she noted that it is pertinent for women, who are mothers, to know their role in the society towards helping to promote and preserve Nigerian indigenous languages by transmitting same to children in the home as they grow up, because researches have revealed that children learn more and better in their early years.

Asked why she is making the call to women and what her opinion is about how the Nigerian youth views indigenous languages, Onuoha opined that, for the simple fact that the programme is targeted at every woman, women are the ones who have closer and longer contact with children from infancy to their adolescent ages, in most cases, and that is why women needed to be informed that speaking indigenous language(s) to children during this early stage of their lives is very important towards making them learn their parents’ indigenous languages or the languages of their immediate environment.

She said the fact that Nigerian youths are not taking indigenous languages seriously is enough reason they ought to be taught the essence of indigenous languages to a people because language is the identity of a people without which they are lost; adding that this position is imperative, as languages are the vehicles which transmit cultures to others, and without indigenous languages, cultures are lost and a lost culture is a lost people.

Asked what she sees as challenges militating against the effective promotion of Nigeria indigenous languages, especially as it concerns women and youths, Dr. Onuoha identified the influence of Western and foreign languages, which seem to be subjugating Nigerian indigenous languages because many have mistaken these foreign languages to mean civilization.

Correcting that erroneous perception, she stated that, no language or culture is superior to another, because what is indigenous to a people is their civilization, and therefore urged all women, parents and the youths, that when they place value on their indigenous languages, taking pride in speaking and teaching one another instead of using English as the only language of communication in the home, then other people too would respect the indigenous languages and children will not see Nigerian indigenous languages as inferior to foreign languages.

Advising mothers on what to do to encourage their children to learn and speak their indigenous languages, the NICO Management Staffer informed that mothers should first and foremost understand the important place of an indigenous language as the transporter of cultural heritage and the need to promote and preserve them for generations yet unborn; and that they should be determined to educate their children about the relevance of understanding and speaking their indigenous languages; they should also create time to sit with their children at home and encourage them to learn these languages by speaking to them while they do domestic chores and explaining to them what is being said, as well as buying books of interest written in indigenous language for the children, reading and explaining such to them, thereby creating in the children the interest to learn such indigenous language(s).

On the role of the Nigerian government in promoting our indigenous languages, Onuoha noted that, the establishment of NICO is one of government’s responses to that role because the Institute has, as one of its mandates, the responsibility of not just promoting and preserving our indigenous languages, but harnessing Nigeria’s vast culture for national development.

According to her, in fulfilling that mandate, the Institute runs a one month long vacation Nigerian Indigenous Language Programme (NILP) in August, targeted at the youths, where several Nigerian indigenous languages, including, Hausa, Yoruba, Igbo, Izon, Tiv, Efik, Fulfulde, Gbagyi, Nupe, Urhobo, and Batonu, are taught across its six zonal offices, in Katsina, Adamawa, Bayelsa, Ondo, Imo and Kwara States, as well as in its headquarters in Abuja and Liaison Office, Lagos; just as the indigenous language programme is replicated in the Institute’s four state offices in, Oyo, Gombe, Enugu and Niger States.

At the prompting of the anchor person, Dr. (Mrs.) Regina Onuoha used the Igbo language to appeal to Igbo women and mothers across the country to embrace the culture of speaking and teaching the Igbo language to their children in order to promote and preserve the language and in essence the Igbo culture for generations to come.

This appeal was re-interpreted in various Nigerian indigenous languages by staffers of the Institute on her entourage: Mrs Sandra Kingsley-Omogiade used the Bini language from Edo State, Nicodemus Nanven Jonathan made the same appeal in Ngas language from Plateau State, while Arnold Elue used Ika language from Delta State to re-echo the same message.

Jonathan N. Nicodemus

Corporate Affairs

Evelyn Makes Her Debut As An Artist

Written by Dr. Barclays Posted in nico news

EvelynCulture journalist, Evelyn Osagie has added another feather to her creative cap, as she will be making her debut as an artist this as she will be featuring in two-month group exhibition opening Saturday, September 12 at the prestigious Princess Theresa Iyase-Odozi’s GreenHouse Art Empowerment Centre, Olambe, Ogun State.

The exhibition, which is led by Professor Bruce Onobrakpeya, will also feature works of 12 celebrated artists, such as Sam Ovraiti, Princess Theresa Iyase-Odozi, Dr. Mabel Oluremi Awogbade, Ato Arinze, Stella Awoh, K. K. Olojo, Juliet Ezenwa Pearce, Bolaji Ogunwo, Stella Ubigho and Oke Ibem Oke.

From being one of the fresh voices promoting artistic collectives and their crafts through her insightful pieces, Osagie, who is also a performance poet, has joined the league of those documenting Nigeria’s rich cultural and artistic heritage through photography.

Inspired by two renowned female artists, Lauren Greenfield and Elisa Paloschi, Osagie brings her experiences covering the arts/culture sector to bear in her photography; and in line with the exhibition’s theme, Nigerian Visual Artists and Politics, Osagie will be showcasing a body of work, featuring nine pieces in coloured and monochrome in varying sizes.

Her displays spotlight issues such as politics, tourism, culture/art, artistic and religious expressions, hope, peace and unity, among others; and her body of work explores the interaction between people, their art, their environment and their attendant power-play.

The pieces, spanning eight years of her journalist career, feature images showcasing places like Idanre and Osogbo; artists/poets like Professor Wole Soyinka, Odia Ofiemun, Chief Muraina Oyelami of Iragbiji, the late Suzanne Wenger, religion, children, and 2011 and 2015 elections;
her choice of subject arises from the desire to share in the stories that unfold around her.

She says she sees photograph as an artistic self-expression of reality; thus, she uses her camera to unearth and explore the world around her; she says: “I have always imagined photograph as unspoken MEMORY garnished with experience. Whether it is a walk down a hill with a friend, the serene town resting in between mountains or the embrace of two iconic poets, each image is a memory of diverse tales in man’s existence. Capturing these unspoken scenes in a flash is what excites me as a journalist and artist. The most exciting of all, which I consider beautiful, is that each of those moments are kept alive in photographs.”

Born in Lagos, Osagie’s foray into photography dated back to her undergraduate days at the University of Benin, where she engaged in poetry performances, creative writing and other artistic endeavours. As a student, this graduate of English and Literature became interested in landscape and wildlife, while visiting relations, and other universities, canvassing for a joint-undergraduate writers’ association.

Osagie is award winning journalist, currently a Senior Correspondent with The Nation Newspaper in Lagos. Her reportorial engagements have also touched a plethora of issues bordering on cultural advocacy, women and child rights, civil rights, mental health, and a host of others.

On the advocacy front, she has been deeply engaged in campaigns, seminars, workshops and other commitments aimed at fostering better policies in rights protection for many Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) and Civil Society Organisations (CSOs).

 

(c) nico news

 

NICO Lagos Ends 9th NILP With Commendations From Participants

Written by Dr. Barclays Posted in nico news

FB IMG 1441635282544The 9th edition of the Nigerian Indigenous Language Programme (NILP) of National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), Lagos Office, came to a close on Friday, 28th August, 2015, with commendations from participants.

The closing ceremony of the one-month intensive programme, which focused on Igbo, Hausa, and Yoruba Languages this year, held at St. Agnes Primary School, Maryland, Lagos and was declared closed by the Director, NICO Lagos Office, Mr. Louis Eriomala, on behalf of the Executive Secretary, Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma.

The event had in attendance thirty eight (38) participants, cutting across different age groups, and they all expressed their joy to have participated, applauding the packaging and organisation of the programme.

Representatives from the various classes gave account of their experiences and made recommendations for subsequent editions, first among them being Miss Ojiabor Chinonye, a participant in the Hausa class and a secondary school student from the northern part of Nigeria, who commended the Institute for the privilege and opportunity given to her to learn Hausa language.

She said her understanding has improved and will help her pass Hausa language when she returns to school, disclosing that she had always failed Hausa in school, and gave kudos to her teacher, who taught the course passionately for her to understand the language better, just as she applauded her fellow classmates for being warm and caring despite the age difference.

Mr. Benjamin Okocha, though an Igbo indigene, could not communicate well in his mother tongue before, but now speaks Igbo fluently; while Mrs. Hajara Usman, a Nupe with strong passion for Igbo language, was highly elated for being part of the programme, saying it will help her communicate better with her Igbo neighbours, expressing her gratitude and pleading with the Institute to extend the programme duration to more than four weeks if possible.

Mr. Anjorin Rasaki, a participant in the Hausa class, was very happy to be part of the programme because it has helped him appreciate the diversity in our various cultures, also suggesting that the duration of the programme be extended.

Mr. M.T.N. Shokunbi, a Hausa student for the second year, commended the Institute for packaging a beautiful programme such as the NILP; and to show how much he has learnt the language, he performed the job of an interpreter for the Hausa teacher, who gave his FB IMG 1441635143017remarks in Hausa language.

However, the participants also urged the Institute to improve on its publicity towards the programme, especially through billboards in strategic areas and other media that will make the programme known to the public; this was just as the resource persons commended the students for their active participation and cooperation despite the short duration of the programme.

The climax of the programme was the presentation by the various classes: the Hausa class acted a market scenario, where a dialogue of buying and selling of yams took place; while the Yoruba and Igbo classes did recitation of numerals, days of the week, and months of the year.

On behalf of the Executive Secretary, Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, the Director, NICO Lagos Office, Mr. Louis Eriomala, commended participants for their active participation as well as the resource persons for their zeal in teaching the selected languages.

He expressed gratitude to parents who allowed their children to come for the programme, saying that only few children attended in the time past as most parents preferred their children to attend holiday coaching classes in their various schools, which had been a major constraint to attendance in previous editions, and advised all the participants to always interact with their teachers and always speak the language learnt, as it will go a long way in helping them in the mastery of the languages learned.

Prizes were also presented to the best students in the various classes, just as certificates of attendance to all the students by the Director, NICO Lagos office.

Offor Nkemdilim

Corporate Affairs Unit

NICO Lagos Office

           

Zonal Head Solicits For Participation In NICO Training School

Written by Dr. Barclays Posted in nico news

DSC096661The Coordinator, South-West Zonal Office of National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), Mr. James Imohiosen, has solicited for the participation of the staffers of the Ondo State Ministry of Culture and Tourism and other relevant agencies in the academic programmes of the Institute’s Training School in Abuja and Lagos.

Imohiosen, who assumed duty in the zonal office in Akure, Ondon State on 21st August, 2015, made this request on Wednesday, 2nd September, 2015, when he paid a courtesy visit on the Permanent Secretary, Ondo State Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Dr. (Mrs.) Modupe Catherine Akinroye.

While commending the leadership of the Ministry for the unalloyed support and cooperation so far given to NICO, since its inception in the zone, said he was highly elated with the level of collaboration both agencies have had in the areas of training and other cultural events, such as the 2-day training workshop for culture workers in May, 2010 with the theme, “Repositioning the Nigerian Cultural Workers for Better Service Delivery; sponsoring of staffers in 2012 to attend the Institute’s annual one-month intensive long vacation Nigerian Indigenous Language Programme (NILP); and the much celebrated 2013 World Day for Cultural Diversity with the theme, “Creativity: A Tool for Peace and National Development,” IMG 20150902 1158321among other events.

He used the opportunity to solicit the Permanent Secretary’s support to sponsor members of staff of the Ministry to attend the Training School, which runs diploma and postgraduate diploma programmes in cultural administration, come 2016, and saying that it is a staff development initiative that will enhance the job performance of such officers.

The zonal coordinator also asked for collaboration and active participation of the Ministry in this year’s children programme tagged: “Children’s Cultural Extravaganza,” which, he said, is a programme aimed at catching the young ones and inculcating the right values into them.

Responding on behalf of the Ministry, the Director of Culture, Mr. Lawrence Amimi, while applauding the zonal head and his team for the visit, said the Ministry and NICO are partners in the wheel of progress since its establishment in the state, and have collaborated in events aimed at promoting, preserving and propagating culture in the state and that the collaboration will be sustained.

ANAKPOHA, Ogaga

Corporate Affairs

NICO SWZ                          

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