The year 2024 International Day of the Boy Child was marked at Queen of Apostles Seminary and Holy Family College, all in Abak Local Government Area, with a call on the boy child to shun violence and live peaceably with their peers, classmates, siblings, teachers, neighbours as well as other members of the society irrespective of age, gender and social status.

The above call was made last Thursday, May 16, 2024 by the Chairperson of International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) Uyo Branch, Iquo Abia, Esq. while addressing the students of Queen of Apostles Seminary and Holy Family College to mark this year’s anniversary of International Day of the Boy Child.

The FIDA chairperson sensitized students on the negative effects of violence which she noted, have often resulted in injury, maiming, depression and death.

She exposed the students to extant laws in the State prohibiting violence against persons, with appropriate penalties in event of violation and conviction.

Harping on youth capacity development and empowerment, the Chairperson assured the students of FIDA’s stance on the critical issue of the boy child empowerment, noting that its position runs in tandem with the Akwa Ibom State Government’s youth empowerment policy as entrenched in the ARISE Agenda. She appealed to the students to maximize the sensitization and advocacy initiative availed them by FIDA, for their brighter future.

The celebration of the International Day of the Boy Child also comprised in its repertoire, sessions of pep talks, advocacy, and sensitization on wide-ranging subjects bordering on the development of the boy child; anchored by high- profile resource persons drawn from government circle, male advocates and FIDA.

Mr. Aniekeme Finbar, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor of Akwa Ibom State on Social Re-orientation, sensitized the students on Career Choice; Barr. Anietie Bassey, an advocate of social engineering, advised the students to shun cultism and imbibe good Relational Skills.

Barr. Arit Udokang spoke extensively on Drug Abuse, its effects on the mental health of the boy child, as well as remediation. The critical topic was later extended to embrace other nuances by Barr. Love Bassey.

In her goodwill message, the Hon. Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Welfare, Dr. Ini Adiakpan, who was represented by Mrs. Unyime Umoh, commended FIDA for empowering the students with the values and potentials inherent in the boy child, and expressed confidence that the awareness to which the students were exposed, would enhance their future. She also gave a talk on personal hygiene.

In his reaction, the Rector of Queen of Apostles Seminary, Afaha Obong, Rev. Father John Ekanem, thanked the women lawyers for granting his students such opportunity of gaining from their wealth of knowledge. Rev. Father Ekanem expressed fulfilment at the morals imparted to the students, noting with excitement that those teachings were in sync with the daily lessons to which the students have already been exposed.

Expression of gratitude was not different at Holy Family College, Oku Abak, where the school principal, Rev. Fr. Columbus Archibong who was represented by the vice principal, Mr. Charles Umoh, accorded FIDA delegation a rousing welcome.

In his expression of gratitude, the senior prefect of the college, Udoidem Richard Raphael, extolled the lofty initiative of FIDA for organizing such inspiring intellectual advocacy for them, and pledged the students’ commitment to maximizing the enormous benefits of the programme for a better future.

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