The National Orientation Agency (NOA) in Gombe State, says it is engaging critical stakeholders towards ensuring peaceful conduct of the 2023 general election in the state.
The Director of NOA in the state, Adaline Patari, stated this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Gombe on Thursday.
Patari said it was imperative to engage all stakeholders since peaceful atmosphere before, during and after election had a way of impacting positively on the credibility of elections.
She stated that the engagements were being done to remind stakeholders of the essence of peace and the need to take the message down to the grassroots.
“If we want credible elections then our elections have to be peaceful; violence is a tool being used by enemies of democracy to perpetrate electoral malpractices like ballot snatching and others which sometimes lead to result cancelations.
“There is need for the people to support all efforts towards ensuring peaceful conduct of elections in their communities,” she said.
According to her, different stakeholders comprising religious, community, Civil Society Organisations, women and youths groups and others are being engaged.
She stated that the engagements would continue, to ensure that before the elections, more groups and communities had been reached with the message of peace and the need to eschew violence before, during and after elections.
The NOA official said election offered voters the opportunity to make their choices and elect those they feel could protect their interests while in office, hence “we must not allow violence to disrupt that opportunity.
” Patari appealed to parents not to allow their children to be used by desperate politicians while cautioning youths against accepting drugs from politicians.
“Any politician that can not produce their children to be part of any thuggery mission for election purposes, do not deserve your service.
“Youths please be careful and refuse to be used for violence; always remember that a peaceful Nigeria will benefit the youth more and guarantee a better future for us all,” she said.
She called on politicians to avoid statements that may create chaos and violence, adding that politicians only needed to “sell their manifestoes and not hate speech or abusive statements.
The European Union-UN (EU-UN) Spotlight Initiative has trained 48 adolescent girls on life skills.
The training is part of efforts to eliminate violence against women and girls in the Onicha Local Government Area of Ebonyi.
The three-day training, organised by the Ebonyi Directorate of the National Orientation Agency (NOA) with support from the EU-UN Spotlight Initiative and UNICEF, was held in Onicha-Igboeze.
The Desk Officer, Mr Uchenna Unah, told the News Agency of Nigeria after the training on Monday, that the girls were trained on life skills to become change agents in the bvid to end all forms of violence against the female folks in the area.
Unah said the training targeted the girls on how to tackle violence, including assault, sexual harassment and other forms of ill-treatment from men.
“This is a three-day programme and we rounded it up today.
We trained the adolescent girls on life skills they need to survive.
“Life skills include refusal skills and capacity to stand and face challenges in any given situation in the society.
“The participants were selected from the eight communities that made up Onicha Local Government Area. “They have been trained on how to talk to their peers and that is what we call peer education.
We expect them to talk to their peers when they go back,” he added.
Dr Desmond Onwo, NOA Director in the state who was represented by Mr Victor Okike, said the agency had been up and doing in the campaign to eradicate all forms of violence in the state.
Onwo said various groups had been trained in categories in Ebonyi councils, including Ohaozara, Abakaliki, Ezza-South, Onicha and Afikpo, amongst others.
He urged traditional rulers, community heads and women leaders to do away with such harmful practices and culture that were not good.
“We have been working hard to strengthen campaign in all communities and we are having a lot of success.
“We have been meeting with traditional rulers, religious leaders, women groups, surveillance groups and the youth in order to eliminate those harmful social norms around GBV, Child Marriage and FGM in Ebonyi State,” he added.
Mrs Ijeoma Mike-Ajawachukwu, representative of Ebonyi Ministry of Justice, also called for the need to protect the rights of women and girls in the society.
She described the event as necessary for having imparted skills on how to communicate on issues, including the use of body language.
“They have learnt a lot on how to protect themselves against violence.
You should know that your not sending your daughter to school is violence against her and a violation of the law.
“There is the need to abolish early marriage and child-labour in the society,” she said.
The facilitators, Idara Effiong and Asari Nakanda, said the training was successful and commended EU-UN Spotlight Initiative and UNICEF on the programme.
They expressed optimism that the girls were equipped with the necessary life skills they needed to survive in the society.
A participant, Divine Moses, a Junior Secondary School Student, also thanked both NOA and the international organisations for bringing up the programme.
She promised to utilise the knowledge she acquired.
Model Girls’ Comprehensive Secondary School, Ugwuachara in Ebonyi has emerged the winner of this year’s Integrity Club National Drama-Video Competition.The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the competition was organised by the National Orientation Agency, together with the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC).It was held to commemorate the country’s 62nd independence anniversary.It was the second edition, tied to national ethics and values, with the topic “Integrity pays”.The Director of NOA in the state, Dr Desmond Onwo, presented a congratulatory letter and N20,000 cash prize to the school on Friday in Abakaliki.Onwo said that the competition aimed at eradicating social vices among school children in the country.He listed such vices as lateness to school, disrespect for teachers, cultism, stealing and prostitution, amongst others.He said that about 12 of the 30 schools in the state, which had established the club, participated in the competition.The state NOA boss commended the school for demonstrating intellectual prowess at the competition.He also lauded its management for instilling moral discipline and hard work in their students.NAN recalls that the school came top at the maiden edition of the competition held on Feb. 14. Onwo urged the students to continue to be good in character and learning as the future leaders of the nation.The Principal of the school, Mrs Comfort Anagor, thanked the agency for organising the competition.Anagor assured the agency that the management would do its best to sutain the club in the school.NAN reports that Royal Comprehensive College, Ezza-Ngbo, Ebonyi came second, while Nnodo Secondary School, Abakaliki came third.NewsSourceCredit: NAN
The National Orientation Agency (NOA) has urged political parties and their supporters to refrain from adopting violence as a strategy for winning elections.
The Director-General, NOA, Dr Garba Abari, gave the advice in Abuja on Thursday, at a one-day Political Parties Summit on Violence-Free Election.
According to him, politicians should be mindful of the fact that if violence increases, their chances of electoral success will be greatly diminished.
“Survey-based evidence shows that one in five Nigerians are exposed to vote peddling, and almost four in 10 are exposed to electoral violence.
“It is against this backdrop, the NOA is hosting this one-day Political Parties Summit on Violence-Free General Elections, come 2023. “Political parties and their leaders have a huge role to play in voter mobilisation for violence free elections and avoidance of vote buying and selling.
“They also have a role to play in mobilising against voter apathy; these can be achieved through intensified voter education and programmes and policies driven campaigns,’’ he said.
In his remarks, the Chairman, Inter Party Advisory Council, Alhaji Yabagi Sani, commended NOA for organising the summit, saying that such engagement would curb electoral violence and vote buying.
Sani said that violence in any election would trigger loss of government revenue and properties.
”Volence also dissuades domestic and foreign investors.
It paves way for people who are corrupt to be elected.
“So, at the end of the day, the nation will not have competent leaders that will provide solutions to the problems that we are having.
“But when citizens are properly educated, especially when they know the implication of what they are doing to the nation, they will be disinterested in anything that will create violence,’’ he said.
Also, Hajia Lami Lau, the National President, National Council for Women Societies (NCWS), reiterated that political parties should shun all forms of violence and play by the rules of the game.
Lau, represented by the Director of Programmes, Mrs Nnena Emedolibe, said that NCWS would always be the vanguard of good behavioral attitudes and promote information dissemination through its platform against violence during election.
Prof. Mahmud Yakubu, the Chairman, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), said that the summit on violence-free elections was commendable.
Yakubu, represented by the Director, Election and Party Monitoring, Mr Aminu Idris, said that the commission had created an enabling environment for greater knowledge about the processes and rules of the election.
The National Orientation Agency (NOA) has called on Nigerians to use the celebration period of the nation’s 62nd independence anniversary to work towards achieving a united, peaceful and prosperous country.
The Director-General of the NOA, Dr Garba Abari, made this call in a felicitation message issued in Abuja on Friday by the agency’s Assistant Director, Press, Mr Paul Odenyi.
Abari added that with patriotic zeal of Nigerians, a united, peaceful and prosperous Nigeria is possible for its growth and development.
He assured the citizens of government’s continued commitment to tackling all the challenges bedeviling the country in order to bring the needed succour and relief we desire in the country.
He described the current challenges facing the country as the fallout of development process which will give way to progress and prosperity.
The director-general stated that as campaigns officially begin, political players should de-emphasis divisive tendencies.
According to him, what binds Nigerians together is stronger than what separates them from one another.
“Irrespective of your gender, tribe, religion and other affiliations, we should continue to harp on the virtues of love, unity and peace.
“And embrace the practice of celebrating the good in other persons and engender mutual acceptance among Nigerians,” he said.
While felicitating Nigerians as they celebrate the national day, Abari urged them to continue praying for the nation to overcome its present challenges.
The National Orientation Agency (NOA) has called for urgent sensitisation in communities in the frontline states to relocate immediately as the operators of Lagdo Dam in Cameroon have began the discharge of excess water from its reservoir with a likely flooding of 14 states in Nigeria.
The Director -General of the agency, Dr Garba Abari, made the call following the alert already issued by the Nigeria Hydrological Agency (NIHSA) with prediction of consequential damage to many communities on the coast of River Niger and Benue.
He recalled the 2012 flooding which cut off some roads in some parts of the North Central and North East regions of the country and displaced many communities.
”The report from NIHSA indicate that the Lagdo dam operators in the Republic of Cameroun have commenced the release of excess water from the reservoir by Sept. 13.“We are aware that the released water cascades down to Nigeria through River Benue through its tributaries, thereby inundating communities that have been already impacted by heavy precipitation.
“The released water complicates the situation further downstream as Nigeria inland reservoirs, including Kainji, Jebba and Shiroro are expected to overflow between now and October ending”.
According to Abari, NIHSA has also reported that Kainji and Jebba dams have already started spilling excess water from their reservoirs.
““This will have serious consequences on frontline states and communities along the courses of Rivers Niger and Benue.
“These States include Adamawa, Taraba, Benue, Niger, Nasarawa, Enugu, Kebbi and Kogi.“Others include the Niger Delta states of Edo, Delta, Anambra, Cross-River, Rivers and Bayelsa States,” he said.
The director-general urged NOA directors to create awareness on the need for State Governments to “identify safe high grounds for evacuation of communities at risk, preposition adequate stockpiles of food and non-food items.
Others, he said, are portable water and hygiene and provide safety and security to enable them have fair level of comfort during periods of possible displacement.
He urged the Community Orientation Officers to identify other partners that will help to support communities at risk with necessary information that will assist them to move to safety.
The Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has called on stakeholders to promote the contents of National Ethics and Integrity Policy (NEIP), and Constituency and Executive Projects Tracking initiative (CEPTi).
The ICPC Chairman, Prof. Bolaji Owasanoye, made the appeal on Tuesday in Sokoto at a one-day sensitisation dialogue organised by ICPC in collaboration with the National Orientation Agency (NOA) and the state Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs.
Owasanoye said the participants were considered important toward the full implementation of the ICPC’s projects in recognition of their proximity to people.
Represented by Mrs Hannatu Mohammed, a Board Member, the ICPC chairman said the efforts was part of the commission’s drive toward the emergence of a new and better Nigeria.
“Therefore, as leaders closer to the grassroots people your pivotal roles in the fight against corruption, demonstrated in the implementation of our strategies are highly invaluable.
“As such your various roles and how to support these platforms were expantiated in details at the sensitisation dialogue proper,” he said.
The ICPC chairman further thanked the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III, for his fatherly role in ensuring the acceptability of the initiatives.
He commented the Sokoto State Government and the NOA for their support and cooperation toward the success of the dialogue.
The Sultan of Sokoto, who was represented by Alhaji Jabbi Kilgore, the District Head of Kilgore, said the Sultanate Council is fully aware of the ICPC’s project and would continue to be part of the exercise.
He appreciated ICPC for their commitment to anti-corruption fight in the country, adding that the commission’s activities will no doubt aid in achieving the required goal in fighting corruption.
“This activity will moreover address the security agencies commitment toward fighting insecurity, indiscipline as well as behavioral change among the society,” he said.
The state Commissioner for Local Government, Alhaji Abdullahi Maigwandu, also appreciated ICPC for its commitment in fighting corruption.
Maigwandu, represented by Alhaji Shehu Garba, the Director Administration in the ministry, assured that the state government would continue to support ICPC toward the success of its mandate.
Alhaji Mustapha Shehu, the Chairman, Sokoto North Local Government Council, who spoke on behalf of the 23 LGAs chairmen, said the dialogue came at the right time.
Shehu, who is also the state chapter Chairman of ALGON, urged the National Assembly to enact a law in which implementation of constituency projects must involve states and LGAs. “This is in order to make the projects more beneficial to the general public without any discrimination of which political party one belongs to,” he said.
Earlier, Mr Garba Idris, the Resident Anti-Corruption Commission, ICPC Sokoto Office, stated that the gesture is in order to sensitise the society on the ownership of government project executed in their constituencies.
“The programme is aimed at fighting corruption by sensitising the stakeholders in order to fight corruption in public procurement and achieve value for money in government projects,” he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that participants at the training include local government chairmen, traditional and religious leaders as well as Civil Society Organisations (CSOs).
The National Orientation Agency (NOA) Ebonyi State chapter, has intensified campaign against corruption among school children as part of its bid to purge the nation of its menace Dr Desmond Onwo, NOA’s Director in Ebonyi, announced this to the News Agency of Nigeria in Abakaliki on Monday, He said that an Integrity Club was established in schools to target the integrity of the young ones and inculcate the virtues of National Ethics.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Integrity Club Competition for Secondary Schools across the country was also established by NOA in collaboration with the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) in 2021. The Director said that it was to enlist the youth in the anti-corruption vanguard in the country.
“It is to eradicate social vices among students such as lateness to school, disrespect for teachers, cultism, stealing and prostitution amongst others.
“The maiden edition of the competition was held in 2021 and many schools participated all over the country.
“About 30 schools in Ebonyi were part of the first edition but only six succeeded and went on to the national level, Abuja,” he said.
He noted that in 2022, “we came up with the second edition and the theme for this years competition is titled: “Integrity Pays,” Onwo said.
The Director, however, said that the programme tended to engage the school children early in the anti-corruption campaign.
“NOA is embarking on the second edition of the Integrity club competition in schools to follow up the 2021 maiden edition.
“As at now, we have 30 secondary schools that have registered in Ebonyi, both public and private schools.
“We wish to have more schools cutting across the three senatorial districts in the state.
“Now, the registration is ongoing; it started from Sept. 8 and will end on Sept. 22. We urge schools to register and participate in the 2022 competition.
“The inagural competition was held last year (2021).
Model Comprehensive Girls Secondary School, Ugwuachara in Ebonyi emerged winner of the maiden edition of the Integrity Club national drama-video competition for the state,” he said.
NAN reports that some schools that participated in the first edition included Abakaliki High School, Presco, Nnodo Boys Secondary Schools, Girls Secondary School, Azuiyioku.
Onwo expressed the hope that programme would help the schools to engender the spirit of patriotism, honesty and togetherness towards nation building.
On the competition, the NOA Director noted that it was usually a one minute drama sketch, poetry or in form of citation.
Youths in the Christ Apostolic Church (CAC) in Abuja have asked Nigerians to intensify prayers for the peaceful conduct of the 2023 general elections.
They made the while speaking to the News Agency of Nigeria at the Abuja National Mega Praise, organised by the church on Sunday.
Miss Temilade Gideon, a youth from the Gwagwalada District of the church called on Nigerians, particularly the leaders to ensue all forms of differences that could stand as hindrance to the success of the election.
”We need to pray to God to guide us as we move towards the 2023 general elections.
”The youth want progress for this country.
We are calling on Nigerians particularly our leaders to ensure we have a free and fair election.
”We are also praying along this line to make sure our dreams come true,” Gideon said.
Also, Israel Pius, CAC Karu District, called on the National Orientation Agency (NOA) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to ensure adequate voter education before the 2023 elections.
“We are optimistic that with adequate sentisation from NOA, our youth would shun any forms of violence.
”We are eager to see a Nigeria that is working .
A Nigeria where other Africa countries will like to learn from,” Pius said.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the INEC announced Feb. 25 as for thepesidential and National Assembly elections while governorship and state assembly elections will now be held on March 11, 2023. The INEC Chairman of the commission, Prof Mahmood Yakub, said the new dates followed the signing of the amendments to the Electoral Bill by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The commission had earlier announced Feb. 18 for the presidential election.
The National Orientation Agency (NOA) has disclosed that the Federal Government was committed to increasing the beneficiaries of the National Homegrown School Feedimg Programme in Ebonyi.
Dr Desmond Onwo, Director, NOA in the state, disclosed this while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria , on Friday in Abakaliki.
Onwo explained that the programme would get to all the public primary schools across the 13 local government areas of the state.
He added that the agency would soon embark on sensitisation to create awareness about the scheme “That is, primary one to three pupils.
We are embarking on a sensitisation campaign to ensure that people from the Grassroots are aware of the scheme.
“We shall be meeting with the critical stakeholders in the state, including the traditional rulers, market women, parents and even teachers, among others.
“Some schools have been captured in the 13 local government areas by the enumerators and the government is trying to increase the number of beneficiaries so that it gets to all the public primary schools,” he said.
The director explained that the essence of the programme was to deliver school feeding to young children with a specific focus on increasing school enrollment, and reducing the incidence of malnutrition.
“The scheme will help promote nutrition, education and better eating habits and also encourage the diversification of production with a special emphasis on local crops.
“It is a Federal Government funded initiative; it was introduced by President Mohammadu Buhari in 2016. “It is free for all the beneficiaries.
The objective is to improve the nutritional and health status of primary school children.
“It will also boost the income of farmers and provide empowerment opportunities for women,” he further said.
Onwo explained that the programme had created significant economic impacts on local agricultural production, benefited communities and the children.
“We urge parents and all stakeholders to support us in the awareness campaign to ensure that the messages got to the people, especially the rural dwellers,” he added.
NAN recalls that the Federal Government had in 2021, promised to enroll more than 67,307 primary school pupils into the programme in the state.
The government in 2021 also said the programme would capture about 561 public primary schools across the 13 local government areas in the state, covering primary one to three in public schools.