The Governor of Edo State, Mr. Godwin Obaseki has said that grooming Nigerian children to compete with their counterparts across the globe, especially arming them with skills and knowledge to meet the peculiar demands of a globalised society would be the best legacy the country can bequeath her children.
Governor Obaseki said this in commemoration of Universal Children’s Day, marked every November 20, by the United Nations.
November 20 is important for a couple of reasons in the United Nations System. It is the date in 1959 when the UN General Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child, and on the same date in 1989, the assembly adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
The governor said that the theme for this year’s celebration, it’s a #kidstakeover, points to the imperative of providing for children opportunities and allowing them the right to express themselves in all sphere of life.
According to him, “As we mark this day, it is important to understand the delicate situation the child in Nigeria lives. In the nearest future, they would be competing with children who have been exposed to the best of cutting-edge technology. With the world morphing into a global village, it is not impossible to have every kid exposed to same opportunities.”
“It is with this thinking that we have embarked on a holistic policy reform to reposition the basic education system in Edo State. We do not want our children to compete with their counterparts in Nigeria; we want to make them global citizens,” he said.
He urged policymakers, teachers, parents and other stakeholders involved in child development to work closely to provide the needed support and incentives for children to realise their full potential.
He noted, “The place of children in the matrix of development is sacrosanct. We must endeavour to build enduring legacies, not just by erecting structures, but by investing in our young, giving them the opportunity to, tomorrow, have reasons to look back and be grateful that they lived in this country.”