A culture expert, Otunba Adeola Segun, has said that the reintroduction of cultural values in Nigeria’s school curriculum is necessary to check the decline in cultural values.
Segun on Monday in Abuja that schools should be the best forum to reclaim cultural values.
“This is because in the process of growing up our children spend more time in school than at home with parents who are chasing career and money.
“Most parents have lost touch with our cultural values; they find it difficult to inculcate such values in their children.
“And again, parents these days are not always at home, they concentrate on chasing money and career forgetting the fact children need their presence to learn many values,’’ he said.
He urged parents to bring up children to be abreast with their cultural values and avoid their being replaced by foreign cultures.
“We have agencies like National Institute for Cultural Orientation that is doing a lot on culture and values; we need to do more from conventional educational institutions.’’
Segun said Nigeria started losing its values many years ago under the colonial administration.
He said the British Government expanded its administration and culture to all parts of the country and as a result, ‘’the cultural values of our people began to go down.
“In the UK, they have the English Language as key but we abandon our Hausa, Igbo and Yoruba languages, and use English instead.
“From that alone, you can see that our formal educational structure has also aligned with the British and that has played down on our values.
“If I have a reason to eat food and decide to use the calabash to eat or drink, I am sure everybody here will be scared.
“And this will generate different interpretations; the way and manner we interpret that Calabash will be different from what it is used for.
“Calabash or clay pot is a local bowl used by our fore parents as plate or cup to eat and drink.
“That changed from a belief that has permeated through all of us,’’ he said.
Segun said that very few people who were still upholding those values found it difficult to use the calabash or clay pot to eat or drink.
He added that such people would not want to be associated with such wrong interpretations and as such the values died.
‘’When you enter the Queen’s kingdom, in the UK, you see some men wearing skirts in the palace.
“That is their culture; that is how they have been maintaining it even with their social development.
“What exactly is wrong if we can maintain our values and culture?’’ Segun asked.
Segun urged Nigerians to encourage one another to enable ‘’our children to begin to see things differently.
“I want to believe that even if not in our own generation, the trend will change such that we will have more consciousness as regards maintaining our cultural values.’’