An anti-graft Non-governmental Organisation, ‘Global Society for Anti-Corruption’ (GSAC), has tasked parents and the three tiers of government to expose children early enough to the positive concepts of the Information Communication Technology.
The President of GSAC, Franklin Ezeona, made the call at the commencement of a campaign tagged “Digital footprints”, at Graceland Schools, Enugu, on Wednesday.
According to Ezeona, if this is not done, it has the propensity to ruin the future of many young ones.
He said: “this catch them young programme is the best way to avert children’s minds toward the positive concept of the internet and the digital world.
“If you don’t catch them young and you allow them to grow with the wrong conception that internet is the only way to exhibit nudity and make false claims and fraudulent activities it will be very dangerous to the society in future.
“So, what we are trying to do is to educate them and make them embrace the positive aspects of the digital world because of the richest people in the world today have one thing or the another to do with the positive digital concept.
“Our target at the moment is school children in Enugu State, but we intend to make it a nationwide campaign because our mission statement is to evolve positive image for Nigeria.
“For now, we are working to sensitise children in schools in Enugu State to the negative impact of the internet and the social media,” he said.
The president appealed to parents and government at levels to expose the children to early positive concept about the digital world.
This, he said, would do a lot to engender better tomorrow for everyone.
“It will make children not be fraudsters; armed robbers; terrorists and other negative elements in future,” he said.
The facilitator of the programme, Pascal Onyekwelu, explained that digital footprint was all about activities that people did on the internet that could be traced later on and handed back to them.
Onyekwelu warned the students that every post was being monitored, adding that they should be mindful of what they posted on the internet – Facebook, Instagram or other social media.
He counseled the children on issues of fraud; fake news, harmful contents and negative information that flooded the internet on daily basis.
The school’s Principal, Mr Ifeanyi Uzochukwu, who corroborated Onyekwelu’s views, said that a post could change one’s life, negatively or positively.
Uzochukwu said: “once you are using the internet, you are leaving a trail, your footprints will be there, whatever you’re doing will be there.
“So, a post can change your life; it can hunt you and work against you in future,” he said.
One of the students, Emmanuella Nwobodo, commended the organisers for enriching them with vital information on how to protect themselves from online fraudsters and how to maximise opportunities offered by the digital media.
“From what they’ have told us, I know now that if I want to be Nigeria’s first female President, what I post on the internet today can affect that my aspiration in future. So, I must think before I hit the button,” Nwobodo said