Fatima Bio cautions Children on Internet Use

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First Lady of Sierra Leone, Mrs. Fatima Bio

First Lady of Sierra Leone, Mrs. Fatima Bio has gently warned school-going pupils especially girls to restrain from taking their teachers’ mobile phone numbers (especially male teachers) with the objective of calling them off-school hours as this would be very detrimental to their future.
She warned that the dangers of this is that most times, schoolgirls who indulge in such, end up visiting the teacher at home and eventually end up pregnant; become dropouts or end up worse. She admonished schoolgirls especially to always be wary and focused on what would develop them for a better and brighter future when they would have completed their education.
The First Lady was delivering her Keynote address on Tuesday 5th February, 2019 at the Atlantic Hall, Stadium Hostel, in Freetown, where the Ministry of Information and Communications in collaboration with SALCAB and NATCOM staged the first-ever Safer Internet Day (SID) celebration in Sierra Leone.
The First Lady went on to warn school children on the uses and abuses of the Internet. She called on them to be agents of change and consider themselves as the next generation of leaders and in that direction they should ensure they use the internet to their best and positive advantage in conducting research and exploring other educational pursuits.
She went on to say that improper use or abuse of the Internet by school children can result in regrettable results such as attracting unwanted attention into one’s privacy or presenting oneself as prey to pedophiles.
Earlier, a power-point presentation done by MIC ICT guru, Mrs. Mariama Yormah explained the Safer Internet Day objectives and singled our four thematic areas she described as the 4Rs school children should consider when using the Internet, namely: Respect, Responsibility, Reasoning and Resilience.
Several other speakers including the Minister of Information and Communications, Mohamed Rado Swarray made similar sentiments. The Minister emphasized that the Safer Internet Day (SID), is an annual landmark campaign celebrated worldwide since 2004 and that February of each year, SID is organized to encourage safer and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones, especially among children and youths across the world. He added that although the campaign started in Europe, it has continued to grow and was celebrated in more than 140 countries in 2018 and this year, Sierra Leone launched its first SID campaign.
Other speakers were NATCOM DG Mr. Maxwell, a representative from the Ministry of Social Welfare, National Children’s Commission Director Mrs. Olayinka Laggah among others.
The ceremony attracted a galaxy of government officials, children drawn from various schools, the press and many others distinguished guests. The climax of the celebration was a performance by Vicky the Poet, Wilma C.E. Knuckles from Methodist Girls Secondary School and a short skit by comedian Vamboi and his team.

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