The Director-General of the Centre for Black and African Arts and Civilization (CBAAC), Hon. Oluwabunmi Ayobami Amao, has said the African culture is potent enough to mould children.
She said this at the 2021 International Day of the African Child.
At the event themed, ‘African Culture Fit for Children’ organised by CBAAC in Lagos, Amao lamented that the advent of social media has further compounded issues as the family culture which was obtained in the past is gradually dying.
She pointed out that there is a sharp contrast between what was obtained in the past and this present time, lamenting that there is almost a total collapse of cultural values and morality in the society today.
“Those good aspects of our cultural values are being lost to the forces of so-called civilization.”
While she described culture as a powerful tool in shaping the upbringing of children to become responsible adults, she maintained that the African culture is potent enough to mould children into what they should be.She recalled with nostalgia how she was brought up through values that were rooted in culture and tradition such as those of respect for elders and constituted authorities, hard work and productivity, honesty and chastity, decency and good neighbourliness amongst several others.
“In fact, most families are now closer to their phones and other internet gadgets at the expense of their families, thereby neglecting their children. The situation has become quite distressing that if urgent actions are not taken, there might be a total erosion of the nation’s values and there would be no society to live in,” she lamented, noting that the choice of theme for the day was informed by the need to redirect attention to the eroding cultural values being experienced in the society in recent times.
Amao, therefore, admonished parents to ensure that their wards are properly nurtured in accordance with the rich cultural values and traditions.
Also, in her remark the chairperson of the occasion, Dr. Olufemi Ogunsanya, enjoined children to be intentional and curious about all that goes on with the culture of their country and Africa at large.
Ogunsanya, who is also the Managing Director of Oxbridge Tutorial College, stated that Nigeria has proven to be one of the most diverse country in the world with over 500 languages, and a rich cultural heritage, despite the colonization.
She encouraged young ones to speak their mother tongue even though English is the country’s official language, “Africa is the bedrock of humanity and we are so rich in our diverse cultures. There is so much beauty in diversity, so do not shun other tribes,” she stressed.
The Programme featured variety of activities including cultural dance, drama, debate, poetic rendition and fashion parade among others.