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Chuks Udo Okonta
The lack of strong commitment to Godly values and clear moral compass are responsible for many of the ills in our society, the Honourable Commissioner, Lagos State Ministry of Establishments, Training and Pensions, Dr. Akintola, Benson Oke, has said.
He disclosed this at the 2017 Father’s Day Celebration by Dansol High School in Lagos, and called on fathers to re-commit ourselves to instilling Godly principles and values in their children.
He urged fathers to reflect on the heavy burden of responsibilities they are called to bear and examine their devotion to the sacred tasks committed into their hands by their maker.
“For fathers who acknowledge the existence and Lordship of God over all things, it is their primary and fundamental duty to teach their children the way of God. More importantly, it is their responsibility to teach by words and conduct that it is important to fear God.
“As a Commissioner for the Ministry of Establishments, Training and Pensions in Lagos State, I am aware of the enormous challenges facing the government and the society at every level of the society.
“Given my vantage position, I can confidently state that the lack of a strong commitment to Godly values and the lack of a clear moral compass are responsible for many of the ills in our society.
“I hope, most fervently, that all of us will resolve to re-commit ourselves to instilling Godly principles and values in our children,” he said.
He said when fathers fail to provide, children become wayward as they become responsible for their own upkeep, adding that when children become responsible for their own upkeep from a young age, they feel justified in their hearts to engage in any action without regard to morality, Godliness or societal norms.
Dr. Oke noted that when young children become hardened in this manner, their rebellion begins a gradual, insidious atrophy of the fundamental social values that hold the society together.
According to him, when these fundamental social values are destroyed, things literally fall apart, the centre fails to hold and the myriad of alarming occurrences confront us: terrorism, prostitution, abandonment of the aged, disregard for education, endemic corruption, and a vicious cycle of imbalances in the society.
“In appreciation of the enormity of this responsibility, we need to encourage one another to keep at the daunting task of taking charge and of going beyond the call of duty in fulfilling the responsibilities of Fatherhood.
“Now, I will be the first to admit that the times are hard. These are tough times for our nation. Money which has always been scarce, has now become figuratively unavailable and available money has dramatically lost value.
“Those who maintain children in European and American schools are lamenting and school fees in Nigeria have become astoundingly high. Add to all these, the ever rising cost of living and the seeming lack of effective response from our economic managers.
“Should we throw our hands up in the air and give up? Should we, on the basis of tough times, abdicate our duties? Should we begin to take it out on our wives? Should we tell our young children to go fend for themselves? Should we abandon our love for God and His ways? Should we lose hope that things will turn out well? What shall we do?” he queried.
He urged fathers never to give up, stressing that ” tough times don’t last, but tough people do!