BY ADEOLUWA ATAYERO
There is no perfect parent. This is a truth that has proven time and time again because of another equally valid truth; there are no perfect people. Humans are dynamic and fickle beings which is why there is no law or set of laws that applies to all parents and all children. However, it should be noted that though we all run an imperfect race, some parents are less perfect than others. As dynamic and fickle as we all are, there are some universal and basic requirements that one must fulfil to truly be a good parent. The topmost and most important of these requirements is the ability to care for your child. Though the styles and methods vary from home to home, the sentiment is transcendent.
What passes as caring for children evolves with the age of the child. For example, spanking a child for stealing when he or she is a toddler might be considered caring but punishing a teenager with the same act would be deemed ridiculous. Caring, nonetheless, remains a very crucial component of being a good parent. What happens when parents fail to truly care for their children? What happens when they fulfil all the other requirements for being a good parent and still fail to hit the nail on the head by not caring for their child on the basic level? Every day we find out the answer to these questions but yet, we seem not to be alarmed.
The case of not truly caring for your children occurs predominantly in wealthy homes, where both parents are either too busy or too rich to be bothered with taking care of their children. There are cases of this lack of care in working class families but they do not come as close to the number of those of those in the one percent. What then does it mean to “truly care” for one’s ward?
Truly caring for your child is not simply a case of making sure they have sustenance or that they attend good schools, it means knowing your child; studying your child on a level that is almost obsessive, almost. Caring for your child means knowing what your child excels at, knowing what your child would and would not do. These ideas seem very basic and many people may find it impossible to believe that parents don’t know these facts about their children but many today do not. Especially in this Jet Age we live in, many parents; whether consciously or subconsciously, have left the job of parenting to the internet and television. If they have not completely hired the internet to take their role, at the very least they’ve agreed to co-parent their children with the internet.
There is no escaping the internet; it is here and it has come to stay. What’s scarier? Every aspect of life becomes increasingly dependent on what happens in cyberspace. However, the fact that the internet is ubiquitous is not at any level a good reason to give up. Many parents have stopped trying to compete with the internet, some never even put up a fight. The consequence of this in Nigeria is realized every second that a student becomes a Yahoo Boy. It is quickly becoming a norm that a percentage of students will be corrupted by the ills of the internet. Why this might be a standard in developed countries, it is a luxury that Nigeria can definitely not afford.
The reason why Nigeria cannot afford to be contributing a steady quota to “The Corrupt Jet Age” population is quite simple, we are not developed. It’s no riddle and there is nothing philosophical about it; we don’t have the resources for such recklessness. Nigeria walks a very thin line in almost every aspect of everything that exists. Whether it is our culture, our economy, our political system, our security, our ethnicities; name it and we are close to the edge. In a nation like such, having an alarming number of youth, and even children, becoming internet raised rascals will simply push off the edge. The developed countries who seemingly have this same problem have been around long enough to determine tomorrow that black is no longer black and it is now turquoise; we are not afforded such h luxury, If we fall off the edge, we become just another unsuccessful third world African country that was not ready to be a country. We will trend on Twitter for one hour and maybe some schools will use us a topic for their student’s research. The end.
What we can afford now, however, is time. We do not have too much time on our side but we have enough. It’s enough time for parents to catch up and learn how to compete with the internet. However, before you can even begin competing with the internet, you have to know your child. The great thing about the internet is that it has a variety of platforms that are designed for different types of people. Is your child the Instagram type or the Twitter type? Does your child love Game of Thrones or is your child addicted to Empire? Does your child care that Apple Music have almost the same features as Tidal Or does he or she care more about Kanye West’s new shoe line? As weird as it is, these are the new tell tales of your child’s personality.
What it means to care now evolves with the newest gadget, the newest trend, the newest celebrity, the newest internet platform. Caring is no longer buying your child an iPhone 6 and giving he or she money to go and subscribe neither does it mean stalking your child’s WhatsApp display picture or liking and commenting on all of his or her Instagram pictures. There is a balance, a very delicate and intricate one, but it exists. You need only to be knowledgeable about all these trends and make sure that they know you are knowledgeable about it. There are countless examples of when ignorant parents have been the ones funding their children’s acts of recklessness. Let them know you know.
If they start speaking in “coded internet” language, pick up your phone and Google it. It is important that you don’t allow yourself to be in the dark. Once you have allowed yourself to be enlightened on these issues, then you begin to assertively and consciously tell them where your stance is on particular trends. Surprise them and have a discussion on Caitlyn Jenner or the new BBM update and instead of preaching, take time and listen. Maybe your views on the issues are actually ill informed or outdated and maybe they are not. Whatever the case may be, make sure that there is a conversation.
If there have been at least four references in this article that had you lost or you have no clue about, you need to buckle up and dive into the internet experience. If you’ve been able to efficiently make it through at least four of the references, you are on the right track but you still have your work cut out for you. The internet, as aforementioned, is not going anywhere but your children are. Where are they going? Pick up your phone and find out.
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EID-EL-KABIR: SANWO-OLU FELICITATES WITH MUSLIMS, CALLS FOR MODERATE CELEBRATIONS
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu has rejoiced with Muslims across the country on the occasion of Eid-el-Kabir festival, urging them to celebrate moderately in the wake of the rise in cases of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The governor also advised Nigerians, especially Muslims to imbibe the lessons of sacrifice made by Prophet Ibrahim and work for the unity and progress of the nation.
Sanwo-Olu, in his Eid-el-Kabir message released on Thursday by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Gboyega Akosile, congratulated Muslims in Lagos and advised them to continue on the path of spirituality and peaceful co-existence.
He said Eid al-Adha became a symbolic event in the history of mankind, given the bountiful rewards that followed the patience and perseverance of Prophet Ibrahim, who held on tenaciously to his faith in God despite being afflicted.
Sanwo-Olu therefore urged Lagosians to draw lessons from the prophet’s examples by eschewing tendencies that could severe the unity and stability in the country.
“Today, I join millions of people around the world, to wish our Muslim brothers and sisters in Lagos State and in Nigeria happy Eid-el-Kabir, which comes with significant lessons for mankind. For the Muslims, today’s celebration is very unique.
“This symbolic Islamic festival is a reminder to us that, there will always be great rewards when we have abiding faith and patience in trying periods; persistence in prayers and tenacity in our belief.
“It also reminds us of the sacrifice we are expected to make not only for the purpose of spiritual fulfillment, but also for the progress of mankind and development of our society.
The governor also reminded Nigerians, especially Lagosians of the need to reflect on the new reality caused by the global coronavirus pandemic, saying it has altered the way we live, work and celebrate.
He said: “Traditionally, Eid-el-Kabir is marked with fanfare, where thousands of worshippers head to various designated praying grounds in their localities for special Eid prayer, followed by festive gatherings, visits to families and friends, gift exchanges, feasts among friends, neighbours and relations.
“However, these activities, which are a reflection of joy and happiness of the season, cannot hold this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Let us reflect on the last four to five months of our lives as individuals, as a state and as a nation. We should also remember our health care workers, and thousands of COVID-19 patients who would have loved to be at home to celebrate with us at this moment.”
Sanwo-Olu also advised Nigerians to support the government’s efforts in building a nation that would work for all, adding that the need to keep Nigeria on the path of development is a collective responsibility of all citizens.
“On behalf of my family and the Government of Lagos State, I wish all Muslims a happy and peaceful Eid al-Adha celebration,” he said.
PA FASANMI, A GREAT NATIONALIST, PASSIONATE LEADER-SANWO-OLU
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu has expressed sadness over the death of an elder statesman and leader of Yoruba socio-cultural group Afenifere, Senator Ayo Fasanmi whom he described as “a great Nationalist, passionate leader and humility personified.” He was aged 94.
Pa Fasanmi, also the leader of Egbe Ilosiwaju Yoruba, died in the early hours of Thursday, after a brief illness.
Governor Sanwo-Olu, in a condolence message signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Gboyega Akosile, said the death of the nonagenarian came at a critical period when his wealth of experience, knowledge and wisdom was most needed in Nigeria.
Governor Sanwo-Olu who also described the late Pa Fasanmi as a complete gentleman and selfless leader said he contributed immensely to the development of South West region in particular and the nation in general.
According to Mr Governor, “Pa Fasanmi, was an exemplary leader who spent the greater part of his life in the service of humanity, particularly the Yoruba course where he contributed to the development of the region.
Sanwo-Olu recalled, ” In the old Western Nigeria, Pa Fasanmi served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Old Western Nigeria Housing Corporation.
“He was National President of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria in 1977, elected into the Senate in 1979, and became a member of the House of Representatives in 1983.
He also served as a member of the National Constitutional Conference Commission in 1994.
“Pa Fasanmi was indeed an icon who will never be forgotten in history of Nigeria and the Yoruba race. He will surely be missed.”
Governor Sanwo-Olu said that late Pa Fasanmi, who was an “Awoist” to the core, would be remembered for his words of wisdom in keeping Nigeria as one united entity.
The Governor added that Pa Fasanmi, had always been advocating to Yoruba leaders to forget their differences and close the ranks for the good of the Yoruba race and Nigeria as a whole.
According to the Governor, “the late Pa Fasanmi made the call in Lagos in his remark at the public presentation of the book: “Yoruba Elites and Ethnic Politics in Nigeria: Obafemi Awolowo and Corporate Agency”, written by Professor Wale Adebanwi, an Associate Professor in African American and African Studies, University of California-Davis.
“According to the frontline politician and second republic senator, this is (then) the time for political differences that have existed among the Awoists and the entire Afenifere clan to be cleared.
“At this auspicious time in our country, it is good we are having an occasion like this which brings many of us (Awolowo Associates) together. The event of today suggests to me that we need to forget our differences.
Sanwo-Olu stated that the above statement among other great virtues are what the late Fasanmi stood for.
“On behalf of my family, the Lagos State Government and people of the state, I want to express my sincere and heartfelt condolences to the immediate family members of the deceased; the government and people of Ekiti and Ondo States over the irreparable loss.
“May God give the departed soul eternal rest and the family the fortitude to bear the loss. Adieu Pa Fasanmi,” Sanwo-Olu stated.
Buhari to observe Eid prayers with family – Presidency
President Muhammadu Buhari will observe the Eid-el Kabir prayers with his family at home, just as he did during the Eid-el Fitr over two months ago.
Malam Garba Shehu, the President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, stated this in a statement issued in Abuja on Wednesday.
The presidential aide stated that Buhari’s decision was in line with advisories from the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) and the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19.
While wishing all Muslims safe and happy Eid-el Kabir celebrations, the president reiterated the protocols, as issued by the PTF that large gatherings should be discouraged, as much as possible.
“Where small groups choose to hold the Eid together, face masks are absolutely necessary, as social distancing.
“Advisedly, such prayers should hold outdoors and worshippers are encouraged to bring their own prayer mats,’’ the president added.
Buhari also said that he would not be receiving Sallah homage by religious, community, party and government leaders, as part of measures to stop the spread of the deadly virus.
While calling for the observance of the occasion as advised by state and local authorities, the president wished all citizens safe and happy celebrations.
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