By Princess-Ekwi Ajide Abuja
The Federal government of Nigeria has harped on the need to forge a common future devoid of tribalism, violence, incessant attacks on students and teachers, or destruction of educational infrastructure.
This was crux of the matter as speaker after speaker at the 2023 Commonwealth Day celebration in Abuja called for promotion of the Commonwealth vision, which projects mutual respect for one another.
The Commonwealth Day is celebrated every year to highlight the historical ties and evolution to the present status of equity in diversity by member nations as well as model the vision of Unity and peace envisaged for countries such as Nigeria due to her diverse socio-economic and cultural background.
It is said that Nigeria has the largest population of youth in the world, with about 70% of the population under 30 and 42% under the age of 15 hence the education sector promotes and appreciates collaboration with Development partners to exploit all available aids for the promotion of the Health and well-being of children and young people nationwide.
In an opening address, the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu said the theme for the 2023 Commonwealth Day celebration, “Forging a Sustainable Peaceful and Common Future” depicts the high global relevance in view of tensions in some parts of the world and a major war in Slavic region with its attendant consequences on the rest of the World.
The Minister, pledged to continue to be a commonwealth champion propagating peaceful and harmonious co-existence especially amongst young people, adolescents and the youth as the hope for sustainable peace and national development.
ACCORDING TO HIM, THE EXISTENCE OF PEACE IN ANY SPACE OF HUMAN AGGREGATION OR NATION TRANSLATES TO PROGRESS, WEALTH AND TRANQUILITY AS IT ENHANCES POSITIVE OUTCOMES IN TRADE, INVESTMENT, HUMAN RIGHTS, DEMOCRATIC GOVERNANCE, QUALITY EDUCATION, DIGITIZED LEARNING AND MOST IMPORTANTLY ENTRENCHES EQUITY AND EQUALITY, WHICH IN NIGERIA AND MOST COMMONWEALTH MEANS EMPOWERMENT OF YOUTHS, WOMEN AND THE GIRL-CHILD
The Director Education Support Services, Dr. Lydia Giginna, said fifty five sovereign states voluntarily chose to strengthen their ties of friendship and mutual cooperation to ensure that sustainable peace and harmony pervade all endeavors and this year declared specially for the youth by Commonwealth Heads of Government, marks a decade of signing the Commonwealth Charter that positioned Commonwealth nations as the golden globe.
The Director, further explained the significance of the dove on the Commonwealth flag which according to her, emphasizes that with peace and harmony, economic growth and creation of wealth for the future is assured and as well, reitterates the need to promote and strive towards sustainable harmonious coexistence with one another and engage in fruitful activities that will create wealth so as to secure a better future for young people and improve the lives of all Commonwealth citizens.
A message from the Buckingham Palace, read by Mr. Nnalue Tobechukwu, said, the celebration marks the tenth anniversary of the Charter of the Commonwealth, which gives expression to defining values – peace and justice; tolerance, respect and solidarity; care for environment, and for the most vulnerable hencecthe imperative to act, and make a practical difference in the lives of the 2.6 billion people who call the Commonwealth home.
He noted that the Commonwealth can play an indispensable role in the most pressing issues whether on climate change and biodiversity loss, youth opportunity and education, global health, or economic co-operation, as the Commonwealth is not just an association of shared values, but that of common purpose and joint action.
The message charged nations to hold unto the myriad of connections between nations which have sustained and enriched them for more than seven decades adding that their commitment to peace, progress and opportunity will sustain them for many more decades to come.