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Peace: 55,000 Nigerians to wear 63rd Day Anniversary celebration T-shirts – Arewatees

…Harps on national unity, peace non-negotiable asset.

by Achadu Gabriel, Kaduna

A body known as ‘Arewatees’ says they are targeting 50,000 children and 5,000 adults to wear Nigeria’s branded T-shirts ahead of the 63rd Independence Day celebration, in a bid to promote peaceful coexistence among Nigerian citizens both at home and in the Diaspora.

Founder and Creative Director of the lifestyle brand with a peace building mission, Samuel Okopi, disclosed this during a Media parley held in Kaduna at the weekend, saying, “There is hope for Nigeria.”

According to him, Arewatees was born in 2016 at the heights of insurgency ravaging the country, especially in the north, with the core mandate to build peace, reinforce the power of positive message, thereby bringing people together in the spirit of oneness, irrespective of tribe, religion and race.

He stated that the project over time has gained momentum on the ground of national appeal, adding that the company, since inception had given out over 700 T-shirts branded with the Nigerian Coat of Arms, National Anthem and Pledge, among other national symbols, with the ideology to present the nation and its cultural heritage to the world.

The Creative Director further stressed that Nigerians are very resilient and creative and, therefore, stressed the need to instill love and passion into the heart of her young ones so they could grow in passion for their country, giving everything they have gotten for national growth and development. 

Speaking on this year’s program, ‘Nigerian Peace Project, 2023,’ Mr. Okopi said “We want this project to penetrate every state in this country in a significant manner, encapsulating the vision of the project which is unity. 

“We are targeting 50,000 children and 5,000 adults both at home and in Diaspora on 1st October because we do not want a situation where only few states are using the T-shirts. We want it in a national and sub-national level where everybody is using it to broker peace and unity.

“Imagine seeing 50,000 kids on 1st October wearing these shirts across the country, bringing that love back for the country again, and they are happy wearing national symbol; the impact would be massive. We want the young ones to grow with love and passion at heart for their country because it’s when you love something that you can be able to give your all to it.

“The whole idea is that we are going to use different symbols that have national designs like the national flag, the coat of arms, pledge and all of that to help people to understand themselves as Nigerians and help to promote peace in our respective communities.

“The impact of this project over the years is huge, it has been great. From the feedback we got, we are really getting the attention of people to love their country more. We are getting people to know about Nigeria using our social media handles. There is a lot to love about Nigeria and not just the US.

“We see Nigerians as very resilient people, creative; that is why we moved past our challenges to look at the positives. Recently, from July 10th this year, we decided to gift our T-shirts as prizes to the best graduating students of 80 schools in Nigeria; that was the plan.

“As at today, now we have gifted over 100 T-shirts to 27 schools in Nigeria cut across Rivers, Plateau, Taraba, Abuja and Kaduna here, and we selected two subjects – creative art and civic studies. We might have challenges but we can still look beyond ourselves to give gifts to people.

“The whole idea is to let the young people of today to know that creativity, innovations and knowing more about your country, which are some of the tools we need to build peace around ourselves.

“Some persons have given up on Nigeria already, but we are trying to use this medium to let them know that they have a beautiful country. No matter the challenges we have, if we can come together, unite and understand ourselves we can be able to reverse the situation for the common good of all. 

“We wanted to give out T-shirts to 80 schools but at the moment we were able to give 27 schools. We feel the government can be supportive just sponsoring these T-shirts for kids,” Okopi said.

He therefore urged government at all levels, including civil society organizations (CSOs), well-meaning individuals and those, who believe in the Nigeria Project, to support Arewatees so as to be able to achieve success, come October 1st and beyond.

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