‘UNIZIK, UNESCO partnership will encourage educational, cultural development’
Head, Department of Philosophy, Nnamdi Azikiwe University (NAU), Awka, Anambra State, Prof. Maduabuchi Dukor, has said its partnership with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and cultural Organisation (UNESCO), will expand the educational and cultural knowledge of students and attract more development to the institution.
He stated this at the 2021 UNESCO World Philosophy Day, organised by the department yesterday at the Faculty of Arts Auditorium with the theme: Workshop On Dictionary Of African Philosophy.
Speaking, Dukor who is convener of the workshop, said partnership with the UNESCO had established a strong cordial relationship in which the university stood to gain a lot.
He said NAU, popularly called UNIZIK, and the students would receive UNESCO’s grants and global relationship in socio-cultural, educational and scientific knowledge in their academic pursuits.
The don explained that the Dictionary of African Philosophy is a compendium, an encyclopedia of concepts, thoughts, short histories of ancient, medieval, modern and contemporary African Philosophy.
“It is a unique genre in that it is the wisdom, truths, teachings, cosmology and ontology of African sagacious and intellectual class. It is not a dissertation or thesis, but explanations of key terms and concepts.
“It takes the form of traditional dictionaries of literary and scientific disciplines where knowledge paradigms and concepts, as well as individuals or authors’ contributions to knowledge are x-rayed and analysed in vivid and concise manner worthy of companion to researchers and scholars,” he said.
He pointed out that the workshop would be an interface between UNESCO and African philosophers who will discuss the modus operandi of the dictionary, adding that the UNESCO World Philosophy Day was established in Paris since 2001, while this is the first time the organisation was partnering NAU to celebrate the event.
A guest speaker, Dr. George Emeka Agbo of the Department of Fine and Applied Arts, University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN) in his paper titled: Between The Archive And The Community: The Igbo Concepts Of Time, Documentation And Morality, revealed how handiwork and cultural expressions of our people in the beginning of the 20th Century were encountered through the archival research in Cambridge.
“Back in Nigeria, we presented copies of the materials to the communities where they were originally produced in Awka, Amansea, Ebenebe, Nibo, Nise, Nri, Agulu, Neni and Enugwu-Ukwu, among other places,” he said.
A resource person, Rev. Fr. Mark Ikekeh, who spoke on the belief of ancestors and qualities of being an ancestor, said: “Ancestors are guardians of culture. We venerate them and seek their intervention.
He urged people to keep in mind the African culture.