The Minister of State for Education, Mr Nyesom Wike, on Friday in Abuja advised children in the country to be security conscious.
Wike gave the advice at the 2012 Pre-Children’s Day celebration organised by the Ministry of Education with the theme: ``Let’s Build a Culture of Peace and Security for the Nigerian Child’’.
According to him, the country has in recent times experienced armed conflicts, violence, and kidnapping, which affected the socio-economic well being of the Nigerian child.
``The security of our environment is everybody’s business. As young children you must be vigilant to know, who is lurking around your environment.
``You are not to pick strange objects or rush to scenes when you hear unusual explosion or commotion, and do not follow people unknown to you.
``It is by so doing that you and the society would be protected,” the minister said.
Wike, was represented by Mr Elijah Kutara, Director of Federal Inspectorate Services in the Ministry, said that in fostering the spirit of unity in diversity, the ministry embarked on rehabilitating and repositioning of Unity Colleges.
He said this was to develop young, detribalised Nigerian leaders who would live as one in a country that had diverse cultures, languages and religions.
``It is also important through our civic education studies that we learn patriotism, tolerance, acceptance of people whose language, religion and culture may be different from ours,” he said.
Earlier, Dr Ben Ibe, Permanent Secretary in the ministry, said the ministry had included peace and security education in the civic education curriculum at the basic level.
Ibe said this was to imbue in the children the spirit of unity in diversity and a culture of peace and security to lay a solid foundation for peaceful co-existence.
``The future of this country lies in your hands. You must therefore learn to love one another, respect each other’s culture, religion and background.
``This is the only way through which we can live at peace and harmony with one another,” he said.
A student, James Teryima, of Federal Government Boy’s College, Apo, Abuja called on government to advocate peace within oneself as the only way the war against indiscipline could be imbibed among Nigerians.
He also said children should be given the opportunity to know their rights and privileges.
Ajibike Itunu, a female student of Government Secondary School, Wuse Zone III, said that as leaders of tomorrow, children should learn how to live in peace not minding the religion, tribe or ethnicity of others.
``We the children should set a pace for the upcoming ones no matter how small we are,” she said.
Itunu called on government to take charge of the security situation in the country by securing the borders to avoid people coming in illegally. (NAN)