It was yet another day of celebration for the people Asang Nsit Area and her well-wishers. There were lots of achievements to count, lots of prospects for the new year and opportunities planned out for the youths.
The Address as deivered by the Chancellor of ANADA on this epic occasion held on Saturday 14th December, 2019 is thus presented below.
It gives me great joy to welcome our patriots, friends and well-wishers of Asang to the 46th Anniversary/2nd Public Lecture of ANADA. We are very glad to see all of you in this happy mood.
Please permit me to specially acknowledge the presence of our esteemed Board of Trustees members, officers of the Crown Council, Our Royal Fathers and titled chiefs, our respected senior citizens, youths and women.
Today marks yet another milestone in our determined effort in uniting our people and developing our great community. For 46 years, our Association has remained steadfast and consistent with the ideal of promoting the socioeconomic and political development of our beautiful Asang community despite many challenges. We salute the courage and commitment of our past and present Asang leaders and people who have continued to show true solidarity
and support to ANADA by elevating it to the position of a credible agent of change we crave for in our communities for the realization of the lofty goals and ideals of our forefathers. Their vision of today yesterday, is captured by the following timeless quotation “Let us carry with us remembrance of how the world is changing, the revolutions which are taking place in the world today. Let us forget our petty quarrels and open windows of our minds so that we can see our changing society in its true picture” NEHRU.
Mr Chairman, Ladies and gentlemen, for the past three years of this
administration, we have taken a transformational approach in the development initiatives of our community. We have undertaken activities aimed at regenerating and strengthening the human elements as well as institutions within our communities so that our way of thinking, our words and actions could align with the highest moral and spiritual ideals to enable us to achieve our personal and collective desires and goals. On the institutional level, we are trying to reactivate through appropriate enlightenment programmes. such
institutions like the family, village council, religious groups, recognized youths and social groups, etc, to enable them play their expected roles and make meaningful contributions to the development of the community as custodians and promoters of core societal values and virtues.
During the year under review, we have successfully implemented 95% of all the scheduled activities in our calendar of major events for 2019; notably leadership and community development seminar, Easter Retreat, Social Effects of Cultism, Narcotics and HIV/AIDS; Ifiok ye Uforo Fund Launch Phase II, students long Holiday Programme phase II, Economic and Investment Seminar for Asang youths and women phase II. Mr. Chairman distinguished guests, within the year
we also had the compelling need to embark on a sensitization tour of the 30 villages in Asang to popularize the ideas and programmes of ANADA to perceived resisters of the change initiative and raise the general awareness of the people on issues of common interest. And what we discovered was amazing and instructive. Our experiences during this exercise would certainly colour our future strategies and activities that would take us to the next level.
Mr. Chairman, our esteemed guests, our society is still backward as a
the consequence of the 5 known enemies of mankind- ignorance, poverty, disease, fear, and superstition. The effect of this is better imagined. Added to the menace of greed, materialism and impunity which have almost destroyed the moral foundation of our society, is the challenge of insecurity. Although insecurity has assumed a global dimension, its effects in our local communities are debilitating and discomforting, to say the least.
Everybody is vulnerable given the level of insecurity in our society today. Terrorism, insurgency, kidnapping, armed robbery, etc, may be taken to be politically motivated crimes against humanity by a few misguided people, but the general insecurity engulfing the society now puts us as a people at greater risk of survival.
Sadly, people still believe that the issue of security of life and property is the sole responsibility of the government and its agencies, but with the daily unfolding events within and around us, we are beginning to think differently. There seems to be a consensus opinion among social thinkers and security experts that community security in a developing environment like ours engenders National security and that insecurity compromises the integrity of the community or state. Insecurity and Democracy are definitely incompatible, for the former is a serious and an abusive negation of all the known and cherished tenets of the later.
In our present level of civilization, democracy is undoubtedly the best form of political authority that would guarantee that people are free, happy, productive, life and property are safe, and every person can aspire and self-actualized in any chosen field. On the contrary, the general insecurity of life and property we are witnessing today has seriously affected our trade and commerce, farming, and food production, schooling- high rate of drop out of pupils, religious activities, child bearing for fear of children being stolen or abducted. We also have cases of our road and street sweepers in the cities being harassed, raped or robbed. We have rampant cases of theft, stealing and vandalization of personal and public properties in our communities.
Mr Chairman, and guests, this is the unfortunate insecurity profile in our so-called modern society. Nothing really seems to work except insecurity itself- like the proliferation of “dark spots” for the sale and consumption of hard and dangerous drugs which promotes general insecurity in our villages and towns thereby constituting a bane to our socio-economic progress. Insecurity breeds disillusionment in the minds of the people about life generally and can be a major hindrance to nation-building. The situation we are all going through perfectly fits the description of the state of nature by Thomas Hobbes, where life was said to be “nasty, brutish and short”. This dangerous situation has necessitated our deep concern and this is the reason we need to create greater awareness because we are all stakeholders when it comes to the security of life and property. It is about our personal and collective wellbeing. Globally, government and security experts are thinking outside the box by calling for synergy of action of all people and institutions in addressing security challenges given its devastating effect on the global economy.
Year 2020 In Perspective
Mr Chairman, ladies and gentlemen, before we conclude, let us briefly mention our direction in the ensuing year. During the year, we had sought and obtained the Board approval to drive the following programmes for the good of our people.
(a) Truth and Reconciliation Committee
Touched by the serious issues of distrust, power tussle, jealousy, malice, lack of transparency, greed, disregard to constituted authority, financial impropriety, petty quarrels, etc, that are common in our towns and villages which we observed during our sensitization tour, ANADA has resolved to set up this committee. It is not to adjudicate on any matter but has a clear mandate to mediate and amicably reconcile all parties in all contentious issues to ensure
that peace and harmony prevail in our community. This committee has already started work.
(b) ANADA Evening Continuing Education Centre
In response to the popular request of our youths and women regarding education and training, this facility has been established to cater for the interest of those who could not benefit from regular schooling when they ought to have done so. This programme would be accommodated at four centres, namely: The Apostolic Church Secondary School, Ikot Oku Nsit, Comprehensive Secondary School, Obotim, Unity Model College, Obontong and Community Comprehensive Secondary School, Obo Atai.
Full academic activities are expected to begin in the third quarter of 2020. It will not be free; our people should note that.
(c) Skills Acquisition Training:
Concerned about the level of youth unemployment and their unemployability because of lack of appropriate skills, ANADA has resolved to sponsor our you youths and women within the available resources at our disposal in any accredited Skills/Trade acquisition Institution within Nigeria. This programme is open to holders of FSLC, SSCE, and up to polytechnic and university graduates who are willing and ready to acquire a skill and become useful to themselves and the society. ANADA is so passionate about this programme and has decided to tag it “ANADA LIFE PLUS”.
Application Forms are available for collection and completion.
(d) ANADA Scholarship Scheme:
Further to the foundation already laid by our forefathers in this regard, ANADA is giving out 3 undergraduate scholarships tenable in any accredited tertiary institution in Nigeria (Polytechnic and University). Each scholarship award is valued at N100,000.00 only, beginning from 2019/2020 academic year.
Application Forms are available for collection and completion.
(e) ANADA Unity Cup Football Competition:
We are aware of many young men and women in Asang with amazing sports and athletic talents particularly in football, the most popular game in the world, who should be encouraged to excel to international standard to the greater glory of Asang. To promote sports in Asang, ANADA has created a football Cup Competition in order to foster discipline, unity, true spirit of sportsmanship and
cooperation among our enthusiastic and vibrant youths. To give effect to this, two trophies and cash have been donated by some of our patriots for the competition. This competition is expected to be an important aspect of 2020 Asang Day events. Nevertheless, all other scheduled programmes in our calendar will be pursued with vigour and commitment.
Mr chairman and guests, one other unfortunate ignorant action of our people that we have observed in recent times, and which is seriously undermining our internal security in our hitherto peaceful community is the indiscriminate outright sale of land to total strangers. This is a huge problem, and intelligent information within our community reveals that these people are land speculators and not genuine investors as they claim to be. Sadly too, these swindlers are using some of our misguided and jobless youths who have no reasonable means of livelihood or ambition to perpetuate this fraud. We really need to be vigilant to avoid being dispossessed of our heritage.
Mr Chairman Sir, distinguished ladies and gentlemen, it is in the light of the foregoing insecurity situation and its setback on our personal and collective lives that we have decided as stakeholders and concerned citizens of this great country to use this forum to identify and critically examine the various executive, legislative, legal as well as traditional options appropriate in tackling the menace of insecurity in our communities. It is on this note, that I have the privilege and honour to invite Dr (Mrs) Faith Ekong – Associate Professor of Urban and Regional Planning of the University of Uyo to lead the discussion on the theme of this lecture.
On behalf of the BOT and Crown Council of ANADA, we wish all of you merry Christmas and prosperous 2020 in advance.
Once again, thank you and welcome.