The National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, Ondo State Coordinator, Mrs. Victoria Nnenna Ani has enjoined corps members to appreciate the intent of cultural carnival beyond the entertaining face value it presents.
The State Coordinator expressed this view when she flagged off the Cultural Carnival for the 2022 Batch ‘C’ (Stream II) corps members held at the Parade Ground of the NYSC Permanent Orientation Camp, Ikare-Akoko.
Ani asserted that cultural identity represented the heritage which Nigerians appreciated and cherished a lot.
“My distinguished kings and queens, it is often said that anyone who refuses to promote his or her culture will be a slave to another. NYSC scheme remains the credible institution which serves as reference point and a platform to showcase the rich cultural values of all the constituents that made up the entity called Nigeria”.
She admonished them to value what they had and resolve to be cultural ambassadors of the various ethnic they might find themselves whether in other geopolitical zones of the country or in diaspora.
The state coordinator disclosed that she was extremely happy recently when she saw a video of some kids in China trying to learn one of the major indigenous languages of Nigeria.
“Gentlemen corps members, the cultural heritage of various ethnic groups of this blessed and rich nation has received the blessings of international communities and this development propels foreign nationals to come in their thousands to research into what made us a force to reckon with culturally.”
The NYSC Ondo State boss advised the members of the service corps to enhance the promotion of their heritage by ensuring that the language, culture, tradition and dressing did not go into extinction.
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“NYSC is in forefront of maintaining connection with our roots and this is the reason behind the introduction of Cultural Carnival to replace the Endurance Trek that was in vogue some years back. Hold steadfastly to your cultures and export it to other climes so that unborn generations will have tangible heritage to fall back on when they get to the centre stage we are now,” she counselled.
The display of rich and glamorous cultural heritage by all the platoons added colour and glitz to the event which made the panel of judges had hectic time selecting the winners.
At the end of the procession and energy-sapping cultural display, number 9 platoon which showcased Ijaw culture polled 85.8 points to emerge the winner while number 8 platoon which displayed Igbo culture with 76.8 points came second and this was closely followed by number 10 platoon with 75 points who dazzled the audience with Benue/Tiv culture and clinched the third position.