By Rebecca Ejifoma
In order to educate and build the future of the state and the country, the Lagos Black Heritage Foundation in partnership Diamond Bank disclosed the theme for the Season Two of the Voice of the Child Annual Painting Competition:
A Thousand and One Faces of Corruption.
At the press conference held at Freedom Park, Lagos Island on Tuesday February 5, the representative of Professor Wole Soyinka, Her Royal Highness, Erelu Abiola Dosunmu said that the aim of the Heritage Festival should not be misunderstood. “We are not out to make activist of children. They deserve their childhood, their season of innocence and security.”
She explained that it was to challenge the creativity of the children early in life and provide an outlet for those observations and feelings, for which they sometimes seek the means of expression.
“Today, of course, society has made progress. A slap on the wrist, a token fine is considered sufficient to close the books on dishonourable acts. Banking scams, oil subsidy bribes, police turned kingpins of kidnapping gangs – children as easy front-line victims of such degraded minds, all the way to elected lawmakers, who attempt to institutionalize the fraud of ghost workers in high places, such as mere private appendages of power, unrecognized by constitution for whom they attempt to budget some four billion naira for a private undertaking.”
This time, she addressed the adults. “If adults have lost all shame, become immunized against peer censure “then let us explore what goes on in the quiet minds of those whom we often deem should be seen but not heard.”
In his speech, Soyinka asked if people imagine that children lack all powers of observation and discernment, even without the bombardment of news, images and public discourse.
With over 1, 000 participants for the competition, Erelu booed the adults that they ought to put their heads under the table in shame. “What can I do to make Nigeria? We must do it, lest, our children do it for us. Then where do we stand?”
Others present at the event included the Executive Director Diamond Bank, Mr. Dozie Uzoma; the representative of the Lagos State Ministry of Education, Mr. Olalekan Olagunju; the Head, Corporate Communicator, Diamond Bank, Ms. Ayona Trimnell; representative of the Chairman of Badagry, Ositode Moses, Mr. Samson Apata; the 2012 winner of the VOTC, Akinola Ibukunoluwa from Methodist Girls High School, Yaba and the youngest Ambassador of LBHF from Island Builders Baptist School, Eziuku Divinegrace.
The Lagos Black Heritage Foundation with its Voice of the Child disclosed the theme for her season two: The Thousand and one Faces of Corruption, to the participants, who will express their thoughts on it through paintings.