Mrs Bolanle Ambode, the Wife of the Lagos State Governor on Friday urged students to shun cheating, but focus on hard work and honesty to become great.
Ambode made the appeal in her speech at the Lagos Back to School Students Competition and Convention, organised by a non-profit organisation – A Fresh Start Initiative.
The wife of the governor, represented by a Lagos lawmaker, Mr Segun Olulade, urged students to lay solid foundation on great values, for a great life.
“You must devote full attention to your studies for great performance in your school and public examinations. Learn to rely only on your ability and never on cheating because it never pays in the long run.
“Discover your purpose early in life. You must dare to dream.
“To dream is to have mental picture of where you want to be in future or what you what to become in life, patterned after some great role models,’’ she said.
Ambode also urged students to have faith in God and display positive traits to excel in life.
“With faith in God, you have divine direction; with honesty, you enjoy trust and confidence of people around you; with hard work, you are covered because you can always rely on your efforts and ability for good reward, rather than people’s generosity.
“With morality and humility, you are endeared to the people, making you readily acceptable and greatly loved. You must attach utmost importance to your academic studies. In fact, it should take pre-eminence over any other engagements,’; she said.
Ambode urged students to discover and develop talents in sports, singing, painting, craft or other skills and potential along with academic studies early in their lives.
The wife of the governor advised the girls and the boys to be morally upright and avoid all anti-social activities.
According to her, girls should avoid indecent and immoral acts, treasure their bodies as greatest assets and distance themselves from everything that can rubbish their dignity.
She urged the boys to shun cultism, drugs, bad gangs, indiscipline, absenteeism from school and such acts capable of putting them in trouble or their future at risk.
Ambode, who commended the organiser training the young people for future leadership roles, said the future belongs to the young people.
In his goodwill message, a former Clerk of the Lagos Assembly, Mr Segun Abiru, said that government across levels should give priority to youth development to give Nigeria a great future.
“We need to train our children; our society is where it is today because of lack of attention to youth training and mentorship,’’ he said.
The immediate past Sole Administrator of Agege Local Government, Mr Oluwagbenga Abiola, urged parents and government to guide the children and give them opportunity to excel by providing enabling environment.
Mr Dayo Israel, the convener and coordinator of the initiative said: “I totally believe that we need to empower young people; we need to equip, inspire and challenge them to become successful.
“This is a mentorship programme to inspire Lagos students. We want both parents and government to encourage the young ones to excel, and prioritise investing in children.’’
Also speaking, a motivational speaker, Mr Stephen Akintayo, urged students to take advantage of opportunities in blogging, freelancing, information and e-commerce, among others, to excel.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the event, organised in partnership with Gleehd Foundation, was held at Teslim Balogun Stadium and attracted hundreds of students drawn from different schools.