From Rose Ejembi Makurdi
Over 500 children, on Thursday, converged on the Tito Multipurpose Center in Makurdi, the Benue State capital to participate in the various kiddies competitions in celebration of this year’s Children’s Day.
Some of the activities to mark the day include soccer clinic, spelling bee competition, indigenous language spelling competition among others.
According to the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Tito Group of companies, Asiwaju Isaac Akinkunmi, the aim of the event is expose children between the ages of five to 15 years to soccer, indigenous language to celebrate children’s day.
He noted that, the maiden event which would culminate to the formation of Tito Kiddies Club is to enhance the development of the children in the areas of sporting, spiritually and academically adding that it would be a yearly event.
While noting that the children would be trained in a child friendly environment devoid of alcohol and smoking, Akinkunmi posited that exposing children to such gainful ventures during their formative years would help them to shun social vices such as cultism, hooliganism, armed robbery among others.
“Today is children’s day and we organised the event to feat the children and to introduce them to the Tito Multipurpose Centre which is children friendly. We organised to mark this year’s children’s day because of the respect we have for our children.”
Akinkunmi who accused some Nigerian parents of discouraging their children from learning and speaking there indigenous languages warning that such attitude could make most Nigerian languages go extinct in a few years to come.
He said that the purpose of introducing indigenous language spelling was to encourage children to embrace their mother tongue, stressing that already, the indigenous language was gradually going extinct.
The business mogul revealed that experts were drawn from various fields to educate the children on indigenous language and soccer.
An indigenous literary icon, Elder Kpamor Orka was on ground to encourage the children and their parents on the need to ensure they know and speak their indigenous languages.
Also, a former Super Eagles player, Dominic Iorfa took time to lecture the kids the rudiments of soccer and it’s benefits, advised the kids who love soccer to embrace it at their infancy.