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Archbishop Valerian Okeke Bags African Youth Parliament Award
Author: By Ononye V.C
Published on: Monday, September 05, 2016

The African Youth Parliament which is an international organization of Youths working in affiliation with the International Youth Organisation (IYO) has conferred award on the Metropolitan Archbishop of Onitsha.

            He was conferred with the award of African Youth Ambassador and Icon of Hope for the Youths in African.

            A delegation of the African Youth Parliament were said to have traced the Archbishop’s Court all the way from Kenya to bestow the honour on a man who they had heard so much about on Youth empowerment, scholarships, charitable works and mentorship.

            In a brief ceremony at the Basilica of the Most Holy Trinity, Onitsha on Sunday, 14th August, 2016, before a huge congregation of over 4,000 faithful, the leader of the group Diplomat Mohammed described Archbishop Val Okeke as a clergy of international repute, philanthropist and lover of Youths.

            Speaking before the formal conferment of the award, and in a formal address that preceded, the leader of the delegation; Diplomat Mohammed explained that AYP  is the initiator of the popular African Youth Award and lecture series which according to him had featured in Kenya many years ago. According to him the aim of the award is to promote all forms of actions good leadership designed to construct the defenses of African culture of leadership and integrity in the minds of men.  He further noted that in rewarding particular outstanding leaders with vision towards the upliftement of Africa they are meant to serve as role models for the younger generations in line with the constitution and chatter of AYP and in the spirit of pan-Africanism of Late Dr. Kwame Nkrumah. Hence, the winners of this award he explained were decided by the parliament on the basis of proposal and nominations submitted by an international jury consisting of eminent personalities from the AYP’s member unions and friendly international organizations around the globe. Thus, having followed and monitored activities of Archbishop Valerian over years now they found him moist excellent to be conferred with this award.

            In his response after the reception of the award, the Archbishop who dedicated the award to the entire Youths of Anambra State and Nigeria at large expressed surprise that his activities were being followed and monitored even beyond the shores of the Niger and the country at large. Noting that he is flattered, He expressed profound gratitude to God whose grace manifesting in Him and His words attracts such commendations. He further praised the grateful and sincere heart of the AYP who according to him are good enough to appreciate the good in another. Then he assured all present that he will never relent in his love and support for the youth. According to him, his love and passion for the youth is born out of his strong believe that the youth are not only our future hope but are equally our greatest legacy. They are our treasure which if not well guarded makes our future bleak.

            With the reception of his award, His Grace Most Rev. Valerian M. Okeke becomes the third person to receive this award in Nigeria. Earlier this award had also been received by two prominent Nigerians, Afe Babalola, president and founder of Aare Afe Babalola University, Ado Ekiti, Ekiti State and Prof. Abudulrashid Garba, Registrar NECO.

            African Youth Parliament is a youth organization involving a representation of youths from across the countries of Africa. This organization seeks to promote the realization of the dreams of African founding fathers while also developing new dreams to advance the progressive course of humanity. In the delegation that was led by Diplomat Mohammed from Nigeria were other delegates like; Diplomat Aziz Kamara from Gambia, Diplomat Dirisu Wanye from Serrial Lone, Diplomat Eric Jomo from Ghana and Diplomat Dominic Kaku from Ivory Coast.


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