National Senior Citizens Centre Launched the Continuing Engagement Bureau Program

National Senior Citizens Centre Launched the Continuing Engagement Bureau Program

National Senior Citizens Centre Launched the Continuing Engagement Bureau Program 

The National Senior Citizens Centre has Launched the Continuing Engagement Bureau Program and Stakeholders Sensitization and Capacity Enhancement for retirees from the formal and informal sectors. This was at an event held on  24th May, 2023 at the Shehu Musa Yar'adua Centre, Abuja.

In her Special Remarks, the Honourable Minister Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Umar Farouq, represented by the Director Reforms Coordination and Service Improvement of the Ministry, Mr Valentine Ezulu, stated that majority of our senior citizens are retired but not tired and that the experience acquired by them on the job remains valuable hence society will benefit immensely from them through the engagement of the bureau program. She commended the Director General, National Senior Citizens Centre (NSCC), Emem Omokaro, Ph.D, for the laudable initiative aimed at recognizing the untapped potentials of senior citizens and providing a one step interactive platform that connect senior citizens with the opportunities to utilize their skills and expertise in meaningful ways.

Farouq solicited for active collaboration and support of all stakeholders in this process as NSCC cannot successfully carry out the program alone.

Earlier in her Welcome Address, the Director General National Senior Citizens Centre , Emem Omokaro, Ph.D, said that today's program essentially targets firstly senior citizens who are retired professionals, experts and practitioners in diverse fields and who still carry the torch, the passion and desire to continue to engage their experience, skills and competencies, their networks and net worth to serve community and country aiming to maximize their latent potential or who are excited to re-invent their roles and engage in new opportunities. It also has provisions for older farmers and artisans both rural and urban who would be encouraged to register on the portal as cooperatives and be connected with opportunities for productive activities and markets. She further informed that the Continue Engagement Program is designed to enable senior citizens with diverse intrinsic capacities to continue to participate in what they have reason to value. This program would not only strengthen senior citizens access to labor market but is created to provide platform for interactions, life-long learning opportunities especially in ICT while supplementing income and reducing poverty, redundancy and loneliness among senior citizens.

Other benefits of the program include to promote positive change in perception, attitude and paradigm about aging and old age and to foster economic development opportunities in investing in enhanced capacities of senior citizens; facilitate senior citizens access to healthy aging lifestyles through active engagement of their faculties in intergenerational activities, mentoring programs, recreation and sports and also to facilitate the transfer of senior citizens latent transformative assets into productive ventures.

Speaking further, Emem said that the Continuing Engagement Program philosophy is the strengthening of the fundamental human rights of older persons, the right to work and the right to non- discrimination. The value is driven by NSCC's optimistic perception of aging; CEB recognizes older persons as national assets; reservoir of inestimable resource, custodian of history and tradition, mechanics of the workability of systems, given their years of experience.

She expressed delight on the positive responses of MDAs and the private sector and said that the success of the CEB program depends on recognizing the significant roles of MDAs, the private sector in old persons income security, health and wellbeing, social connections and engagement of capacities and to this end NSCC actively seeks these partnerships as according to her CEB program is a winning formular for all parties.

The Development Economist and NSCC Coordinating Consultant, Dr Emeka Okengwu,  gave Technical Overview of the program.

The high point of the event was the launch of the program portal and jingle by the Representative of the Honourable Minister Mr Valentine Ezulu and an Award termed Legacy Award was given to the Honourable Minister on behalf of the NSCC and Senior Citizens in Nigeria by the DG NSCC in appreciation for her ensuring that the board of the Agency was inaugurated and the provision of office accomodation  for the Agency amongst others.

There were goodwill messages from Representatives of Legal Aid Council, NAPTIP amongst others.

The event was attended by Representatives of MDAs, Director Generals of various agencies, Executive Secretaries, members of the Diplomatic Corps, Representativs of Council of Retired Permanent Secretaries and Nigeria Union of Pensioners among others.

Rhoda Ishaku Iliya

Deputy Director Information

24th May, 2023

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