Chairman of the Ethical and Attitudinal Reorientation Commission (EARCOM), Akwa Ibom State, Dr Dorothy Thompson has charged students/cultists belonging to different cult groups to openly denounce their membership of cult groups to avoid dire consequences of the evil practice.
Addressing newsmen in her office on the heels of the closure of Government Technical School Ewet, over Cult-related clash with the Police recently, Dr Thompson frowned at the unruly behavior of the students and decried the involvement of some of them in cult related activities, warning that cultism is not only unprofitable but, can destroy their future.
Expressing worry that students whose ages range between 13 to 18 now engage in various crimes and social vices, Dr Thompson sued for cooperation from parents, religious organizations, traditional and socio-cultural groups as well as civil society organizations to join the campaign to raise socially responsible people which, she said EARCOM has championed.
Dr Thompson urged the students involved in cultism to repent and shun acts capable of bringing them in conflict with the law, observing that, the Akwa Ibom State Government had earlier proscribed Cult groups in the state and will crackdown on anyone that breaches the proscription order.
The EARCOM Boss revealed that the Commission has initiated a campaign called Raising Socially Responsible People, which is a Campaign Against Cultism and Other Social Vices, and has taken it to select schools across the ten Federal Constituencies of the state with an elaborate programme meant for countering narratives of cultism and social vices amongst youths by turning them to be better citizens.
She commended Governor Udom Emmanuel for his courage to confront the menace of cultism and the education Summit he convened to address serious challenges in the sector and enjoined students to resist the temptation of yielding to negative influences of friends, peer groups, classmates or seniors if they will become great statesmen tomorrow.
While describing cultism as an envelope containing many crimes such as armed robbery, murder, kidnapping, rape, drug abuse, truancy and violence, Dr Thompson advised youths to always reflect on the positive sides of their future and know who their friends are and the kind of life they live to avoid getting involved in what may ruin their lives.
According to her, there will be no hiding place for any student or persons who are involved in cultism and their sponsors as the Udom Emmanuel-led administration is fully out to kick-out all forms of cultism and unruly behaviours among students in the state.
The Chairman called on the School Management Board, Parents Teachers Associations, and especially parents to rise up against unruly behaviours among children and start monitoring the type of friends they keep in school and at home.
She also called on students to draw closer to God and learn how to make it in life through the grace of God, adding that believing cultism will make them successful is a lie from the pit of hell.
Dr Thompson assured that her Commission will embark on another round of mass sensitization and public awareness campaigns to reinforce the crusade to eradicate cultism in the society.