“Anambra, as it is administered today by Mr. Governor, Professor Charles Chukwuma Soludo, CFR, is an ‘A’ state and its people must begin to build positive narratives around the state, in conformation with the visible transformations ongoing in the state”
The MD/ CEO, of Anambra State ICT Agency, Mr Chukwuemeka Fred Agbata, CFA gave the advice on Wednesday, 27th September 2023, during the one-year anniversary celebration of the Wikimedia Anambra Network.
The event, which took place at the Ekwueme Centre for Multi-Disciplinary Research, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, was also to create awareness of the presence of Wikimedia in Anambra State as a major open source for information sharing.
Speaking at the event, Agbata said there is more to Anambra than the negative stories being peddled by a few enemies of the state.
He however said people should prepare to confront the task of crafting positive narratives about Anambra, particularly using digital platforms like Wikipedia.
CFA congratulated the Wikimedia Anambra Network for clocking one year in Anambra, emphasizing how important the Network has been in the present efforts of the state government under Governor Soludo to make Anambra a liveable and prosperous mega city.
“When I first came in contact with the Wikimedia group back in Lagos, I saw what they were doing. If you don’t tell your story, no one will. No one knows your culture and your realities so it becomes important that this kind of network multiply across all parts of the country.
“Again, the editors in Lagos or elsewhere, may not know the culture and exciting stories of Anambra communities, posing the need for Anambra people to tell their own positive stories the way they need to be told.
“That’s why at the Anambra ICT Agency, we took it personally to work with the Network because we want to see a practical change.
“The governor is doing a lot to better the Anambra community but all that you hear, are the negative narratives.
“So collectively, we need to begin to tell the right stories about Anambra, the Southeast, and make this place better,” he said.
Agbata harped on the need for the people to support the Network, noting that the governor has given his blessings to such initiatives as this, that sell the Anambra story.
“We have quality people here, businessmen doing well in their lines, academic gurus, artisans and craftsmen, local communities with amazing culture and traditions and many more.
“Why do we have to accept the negative ones being peddled by few individuals because we are doing enough to sell ourselves,” he queried.
Earlier in her remarks, the President, of Wikimedia User Group, Anambra Network, Dr. Ngozi Osuchukwu, explained that Wikimedia is all about digital literacy, skills, and digital information management, enabling people to contribute to open knowledge in a progressive way.
Dr Osuchukwu revealed that in the past 12 months, the Network has planned and implemented over 22 projects in Anambra State and beyond, 6 out of which were community-based.
These projects she noted, cut across many areas including health, governance and politics, community information, and open knowledge, and lately, they ignited a partnership with the state government, through the Anambra State ICT Agency.
“Today, we are counting our successes plus the Anambra Network won the network with the most participants in July’s ‘Naija Office Hour’.
“From here, people have also been selected to attend Wikimedia international conferences. Last month, one of us was sponsored to Singapore for a Wikimedia activity.
In the month to come, one of us is going to Morocco for Wiki activity and another person is going to India as well. So, there are a whole lot of activities going on,” she said.
Osuchukwu stressed the need for people to embrace digital literacy and become volunteers in the Wikimedia spaces, to enable them to tell their own stories.
She commended the various brands who have partnered with and sponsored the Network through the last year, especially the Anambra State ICT Agency, expressing the hope that the partnership will continue for the growth of digital literacy in the state.
At a panel discussion, various members of the Wikimedia Anambra Network, Mrs. Goodness Abasili- Coordinator and co-founder, Igbo Wiki librarians hub, Dr. Adaora Obuezie, Vice President Wikimedia Anambra Network & Coordinator NAU- Wiki-fan-club, Timothy Ezenwanne Communications/Projects Officer, Anambra Network and Nwosu Chisom Vivian, the Face of Wikimedia Anambra Network threw more insight on Wikimedia, its benefits and those eligible to enlist as Wikimedians.
Cutting of the anniversary cake, cultural performances as well and poetic renditions in English and Igbo languages formed the highlights of the event.
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