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‘Nigeria needs paradigm change in leadership’

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The Director of Afara Leadership Centre (ALC), Ebele Okoye has insisted that Nigeria need a paradigm shift in leadership due to the depressing, poor leadership style of the country.

She argued that such paradigm change leadership could be attained from getting to the root fabric of our thought, the fundamental essential paradigms, which gives definition to character and create the lens with which the world is seeing.

Okoye stated this at a service project for the Internally Displaced Person (IDP) living within the Eleko community in Ibeju Lekki, Lagos state, by student participating in the Leadership Development Programme (LDP) with the theme Afara Make a Difference (AMAD) project established by the Women Board Education Cooperation Society (WBECS) to cater for the needs of women of all ages and social background but more especially young female undergraduates.  

Okoye stressed the need for a new crop of leaders at all levels, those that would focus primarily on the growth and well-being of people and to raise and educate the young generation servant-leader/upright leadership where the leaders’ share power put the needs of the people first and help to develop them.

“Unless the current generation of youths are given similar forms of leadership training the change we all dream of may never become a reality.      

“The Leadership Development Programme seeks to meet the challenge of the dearth of female leadership. The programme’s philosophy is leadership through self-leadership and social responsibility. Its theoretical part aims at energizing participants to be change agents, instilling leadership qualities and professionalism at work and providing entrepreneurship skills. The practical part – leadership in action – aims at social responsibility through community development projects and other volunteer work experience. The model of the leadership programme is a model and since its inception not less than 200 female undergraduates have benefited from the programme. These have in turn affected the lives of about 500 men and women and thousands of children,” she said.

Besides raising leaders, the programme was aimed to fight abject poverty found in the rural communities in Nigeria introducing them to the basics of entrepreneurship, meeting with micro-credit providers and cottage industry skills acquisition.

One of the participant Nwanneka Achunulo a 500 level student of medicine and surgery, University of Lagos narrated that they had different activities for each day, they taught them some skills such as pastries which included chin chin, puff puff and fish roll, we also taught them how to make liquid soap, insecticides and bleach and how to tie and dye.
    
The children were not left out, they were taught personal hygiene on brushing their teeth, hand washing and how to make paper mat. They were engaged to keep them busy while their mothers were learning the different skills.

According to Achunulo, the final day they conducted medical checks during which they evaluated their anthropometry, blood pressure, blood glucose, dental checks and medical consultation. They also administered drugs according to their needs.



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