Akwa Ibom State Governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel has instituted a Prize for the Secondary School in the State that will be assessed as one with the best behaved students and no trace of social vices currently bedevilling schools in the nation.
This development was disclosed by the Chairman of Ethical and Attitudinal Re-orientation Commission, EARCOM, Dr Dorothy Thompson while addressing student leaders and Principals of selected schools during the One Day Sensitization Conference in Ikot Abasi Federal Constituency on the theme, ‘Being a Socially Responsible Citizen’.
Speaking through her representative, Hon. Victor Udofia, the EARCOM boss said, EARCOM is taking the vision of Governor Udom Emmanuel to curb social vices such as cultism, prostitution, rape, vandalism, violence, drug abuse and bullying, among others around the ten Federal Constituencies of the State.
Dr Thompson explained that, the campaign which has already been taken to Eket and Oron Federal Constituencies was targeted at reaching student leaders and Secondary schools which have become a breeding ground to entice young people into socially deviant behaviors and groups.
She told students to be wary of cultism as they have been proscribed by Governor Emmanuel and does not bring anything good but fear and untimely death to those who indulge in it.
Speaking on the Prize instituted by the governor, Dr Thompson said any School that meets the criteria will smile as the Prize will prove a handsome reward for such a school.
The keynote speaker, who is a Lecturer at the College of Education, Afaha Nsit, Dr Mrs Imeofon Udoh, charged students to eschew violent crimes, shun cultism, embrace integrity and responsible conduct which she listed to include, respect for constituted authorities, elders and parents, self discipline, fear of God, tolerance and kindness to one another.
Dr Imeofon Udoh decried the menace of cultism, drug abuse, sexual immorality and other forms of social misconduct, which she flayed as bringing down people and destroying their future.
She accordingly charged the students to hearken to the clarion call by EARCOM to desist from and resist enticement into these social vices so as to secure their future and guarantee the potentialities of their successful future goals.
Also speaking at the event, Senior Special Assistant to Governor Udom Emmanuel on Agriculture and EARCOM Ambassador, Mr Moses Armstrong, charged the students to fear God, be focused on their education and flee from every appearance of evil.
Armstrong who is a renowned Nollywood actor, said he figured out early in life that, to be successful and stable in life, one must avoid involving in Social vices which are detrimental to his physical role spiritual and mental health.
Pastor Samuel Uffiah in his exhortation, counseled the students to make obedience their watchword, as they obey their parents and guardians, which is God’s commandment.
Earlier, the Chairman of the occasion, Rt. Hon. Udobong Ekpo, represented by Mr Ukpong Enoidem, commended Governor Udom Emmanuel for his love for Youths and the passion he has demonstrated in empowering EARCOM to embark on the campaign to sensitize them on the dangers of mortgaging their future by indulging in criminality.
Rt. Hon. Ekpo, who however advocated for a townhall Sensitization to be convened for parents and guardians at the grassroots on how to raise socially responsible citizens, expressed confidence that Governor Emmanuel’s vision will yield dividends and save the future of the State from the menace and evils associated with cultism and other social vices. He lauded EARCOM for the commitment to the campaign and charged students to inculcate the moral crusade in their lives.
Responding on behalf of the Principals of the select schools, Mr Cyril Umoessien thanked Governor Udom Emmanuel for not only sustaining the Free and compulsory education programme, but for also renovating several schools, paying examination fees of students and enabling the Sensitization conference to schools.
Mr Umoessien who is the Principal of Secondary Commercial School, Ibekwe, Ikot Abasi Local Government Area which hosted the event assured that the they will take the campaign to the larger school population.
EARCOM later gave out customized exercise books, stickers and other Sensitization materials to students and participating schools.