Lagos govt pledges to prioritise children well-being

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The Lagos State Government says it will continue to promote and give priority to policies and programmes that will promote the well-being of children in the state.
The Lagos State Commissioner for Information, Mr Gbenga Omotoso, said this at the third edition of the Islamic Education Fair organised by the Lagos State Radio Services owners of Radio Lagos/EKO FM on Tuesday in Lagos.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the theme of the three-day fair is “The Portrait of a Total Child.”
Omotoso noted that the state government had always given priority to policies relating to children by allocating the largest budgets to education and health sectors.
He noted that Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu was interested in the training, education and well-being of children.
Omotoso added that it would continue to be of the utmost priority of the state government.
“This is a programme that I love so much, it is encouraging that at this time people are thinking about how to bring up our children, the ones they call leaders of tomorrow but which I know they are the leaders of today.
“Anything that has to do with children, Mr Governor is interested and doesn’t joke with it at all.
“Anytime we are doing the budget preparation, education and health carry the biggest slice of the cake because we want our children to learn in a good environment.
“This is even before they are born, we pay attention to their health so that by the time they are born, they are potential stars,” he said.
The commissioner noted that parents must pay attention to their children in order to have a good and better society.
“For me, anything that has to do with children is something all of us must pay attention to because people say that children are the leaders of tomorrow and they are our future.
“Our children are not just our future, they are the one that are running the show now in many sectors.
“There’s nothing you want to do today that you don’t talk about technology and when you talk about technology, our children are the one that are at the forefront of it, they are the one who are leading us.
“I went with the governor few months ago to some of these technology hubs in Lagos and all of the people that are found there are young people, boys and girls.
“If you saw the kind of things that they were doing, how they used technology to resolve a lot of problems, you will be proud of them.
“I believe this is the time to tell them all the good things we want them to do, the time is now,” he noted.
Munirudeen Arriyaadiy, a lecturer at the Lagos State University of Education, Ijanikin, urged parents to train their children against immoral dressing and cross dress which has become the new trend in the society.
In his lecture titled: “The Template of an Exemplary Child and the New Normal,” Arriyaadiy said that to have an exemplary child, parents must draw their children closer to God.
He added that many homes were spiritually empty because the children had been neglected.
He urged parents to monitor the activities of their children on social media and mobile phones adding that it was causing more harm than good because of lack of supervision.
“Parents should train children against exposing their body, indecent dressing and cross dressing.
“There is no spirituality or godliness again in our homes; everything has fallen because of lack of love and lost of societal values.
“As parents, you must learn to talk to your children with the right language and in a godly manner.
“Parents should adopt right language to prevent the children from exhibiting the same character when they become adults.
He advised men to provide for their wives and be alive to their responsibilities in the homes in order to have good and upright children.
Mrs Abiola Seriki-Ayeni, the Director General, Lagos State Office of Education Quality Assurance, Lagos State Ministry of Education, advised parents, school owners and teachers to stop overloading children with too much school activities.
Seriki-Ayeni was represented by Mr Akodu Kamorudeen, Director, Monitoring and Investigation in the Agency.
She said that when children are overloaded with school work, notes, after school lessons, assignments and projects, they are exposed to low productivity.
In her lecture titled: “Childhood and Learning Overload, a Holistic Insight,”
she said that parents, school owners, teachers, school managers and government are responsible for overloading children’s brain.
“When we expose children to too many things to learn, we are overloading them,” she said.
Seriki-Ayeni listed the effects of work overload as mental fatigue, anxiety, stress, frustration, change in behavioral pattern, and less productivity.
She urged school owners and teachers to reduce the volume of assignments, class notes, homework, projects and private lessons.
Earlier, Mr Jide Lawal, the General Manager, Radio Lagos/EKO FM, said that the symposium provides an avenue for stakeholders in the education sector to take decisions for the benefits of the children.
Lawal noted that according to UNESCO as of Oct. 15, 2022, about 20 million children are out of school in Nigeria as against the 10.5 million similarly reported by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in 2020.
He said that the programme was borne out of thestation’s  little contribution toward supporting government’s efforts in keeping the children off the streets and get them productively active in schools.
According to him, the event represents Radio Lagos/EKO FM’s Corporate Social Responsibility of giving effects to the attainment of the THEMES agenda of Gov Babajide Sanwo-Olu particularly as its relate to education in the state.
“The objective of the Islamic fair is to have exemplary children that will be complete in all ramifications for the good of the nation,” he said.
Mr Afeez Toriola, the Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Transportation, urged parents to train their children and wards in godly way in order to overcome the social vices.

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