As part of its mandate to interpret and extend programmes of government as well as support its realization, Ethical and Attitudinal Reorientation Commission (EARCOM), has taken a proactive step to strengthen Akwa Ibom Children Prayer Network ( AKC-PRAN), a prayer forum for children in primary schools across the state.
Addressing the coordinators of the network who are also heads of various primary schools in the state, on Wednesday, at the headquarters of the commission, along Idoro Road, Uyo, EARCOM chairman, Dr. Dorothy Thompson, said the event was organized to interface with the coordinators and also encourage them to continue to pray with their pupils for the success of Governor Umo Eno and his administration.
Dr. Thompson, who stated that the event was the 4th in the series, having started in 2021 to incorporate pupils in primary schools across the state to also have a prayer forum like what the women and other groups have, explained that the network comprises 12 pupils from each primary school across the 31 local government of the state that were selected alongside their coordinators, to regularly intercede for the state.
“ We in Akwa Ibom State felt we could do the same thing with the children population in primary schools as various strata of the citizenry the women. the youth and the elders also pray. It was suggested to Their Excellencies then Governor Udom Emmanuel and wife Dr Martha Emmanuel that EARCOM could drive the process; a programme of having to pray for the state using children. The bible says out of the mouth of babes and suckling God has ordained strength. So, children should also lift up their voices and cry unto God for a greater Akwa Ibom State and the nation. The ages of the children we are focusing on is between 7 -11.”
The chairman said the pragmatic step taken by EARCOM to give Akwa Ibom children a sense of belonging and responsibility in the place of prayers also afforded the commission another opportunity to use the platform to campaign against cultism at the primary school level, and to instill moral values which she noted were gradually eroding.
Dr. Thompson also revealed that so far, the regular prayer exercise had yielded bountiful results in the state, as Akwa Ibom State has been adjudged the most peaceful state in the nation. Other variables which are development-driven and progressive are indices she said led to the emergence of Pst Umo Eno as the present governor of the state
“ God has answered our prayers. The state has been very peaceful. The state has developed and we were able to bring out a successor. We concluded our elections and we brought out a pastor to be the governor of the state. The wife is also a pastor. What a blessing !
The EARCOM chairman therefore stated that, in view of this, the commission would continue with its lofty plans and orientation across all strata of the state to sustain the peace, progress and development of Akwa Ibom.
Speaking at the gathering, a Professor of Criminology from the University of Uyo, Aniekan Brown, urged the coordinators to teach the children beyond the regular Mathematics, English Language and other subjects that they expose them to.
Prof. Brown, who narrated how the head of the primary school he attended many years ago constantly prayed and made positive pronouncements on him to become great in life, charged the school heads to emulate this lofty ideal and pray for their children, as well as encourage them in the way of the Lord.
According to him, “ Keep praying for them. Someday, the answers to those prayers will come. Anywhere you will be in the world, you will be satisfied with the results.
“ God made Abraham great, but the succeeding generation was greater and the one that succeeded that one was the greatest. I pray that the pupils you teach will be greater than you and those who come after them will be greater than them, and the impact will be seen that indeed, our state has developed”.
Also speaking at the event, Assistant Commissioner of Police,(ACP) and multiple award winning police officer Francis Erahgbo, while alluding to the scriptures, urged the prayer coordinators to do more by showing the children in their care the way of the Lord and prophesying into their lives.
The police officer however decried increasing vices and loss of moral values among children in the society, including those at the primary school level, and urged the coordinators not to relent in praying and exemplifying moral rectitude in their children until they turned out better and socially responsible citizens of society. Other contributors equally gave goodwill messages.
Appreciating EARCOM for the initiative on behalf of other coordinators, the head teacher, St. Theresa Primary School in Obot Akara Local Government Area, Apostle E. A. Ette, noted with satisfaction the steps taken by the commission to bring about attitudinal change among children in the state, expressing optimism that this would achieve the desired results. The closing prayer was given by Pastor (Mrs) Ekaete Imeh, one of the participants in the meeting.