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ENUGU—GOVERNOR Chimaroke Nnamani of Enugu State has stressed the need for increased exchange programmes and visits between and.....
ENUGU—GOVERNOR Chimaroke Nnamani of Enugu State has stressed the need for increased exchange programmes and visits between and among students of the developed and developing countries of the world.
Nnamani spoke when he hosted a group of students and their teachers from CK McClatchy High School in Sacramento California, the United States of America, who were on a cultural and educational programme tour of some states in Nigeria at the Government House, Enugu.
He noted that such exchange programmes and visits could serve as a bridge and go a long way towards broadening their knowledge and correcting some misconceptions and negative stereotypes being disseminated by the foreign media about Africa and other developing countries.
According to the Governor, “I hope that your visit here is going to broaden your mind and outlook on other parts of the world, their cultures, educational systems and above provide the stimuli for you to learn our history and culture here in Nigeria further, so that whenever you go back to the United States you will serve as symbols and ambassadors of the Nigerian experience.”
Governor Nnamani, who illustrated his explanations on the Nigerian map, spoke at length on the socio-cultural and educational system in Enugu State, local administration, the legislature and the judiciary, while drawing comparisons with what obtains in America.
He told them that whereas democracy in America is advanced and dates back to over 200 years, Nigeria is an emerging democracy with a recent history of prolonged military dictatorship, adding that the people were still trying to get used to the new democracy.
He commended the team for choosing Enugu as one of the states to be visited during their tour and assured that government would provide them with the relevant information and conducive atmosphere to enable them know more about Nigeria and Enugu State and also make their visit worthwhile.
Answering questions from the students during an interactive session, Governor Nnamani explained that there were no ethnic or religious skirmishes in the state, adding that even at the national level, ethnic conflicts tended to be spontaneous rather than permanent and as painted in some sections of the Western press.
He noted further that though conflicts and disagreements were a feature of politics everywhere, they tended to be resolved more amicably in the established democracies unlike in emerging democracies like Nigeria where conflicts tended to be pursued with a high level of aggressiveness and desperation.
geria, like other developing countries, was still grappling with infant and maternal mortality, poverty, hunger, destitution, child labour, and lack of basic infrastructures such as roads, electricity and others.
He however expressed the hope that it democracy lasts and government’s efforts to restore hope and freedom to the people sustained, things will change for better and the tide of migration will also change with Nigerians in Diaspora coming back home to stay and contribute to national development just like he did.
Explaining their mission, the leader of the team and Director for African Centre for Peace and Conflict Resolution, California, United States, Professor Ernest Uwazie, told the Governor that they were on an exchange programme visit to Nigeria and Ghana to study about the peoples’ culture and educational system.
According to Professor Uwazie, the visit became very necessary to enable the students have first experience of African culture, especially in Nigeria, adding that from Enugu they would go to Owerri, Imo State, and thence to Port Harcourt in Rivers State from where they would proceed go to Ghana.
Professor Uwazie noted that the exchange visit would enhance their global outlook, especially as regards the image of Africa which often times portrays negatively in the Western media.
He thanked the Governor for the warm reception accorded them since their arrival and noticeable changes his administration was making in the State.
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