The anthem, like other national symbols of a country, represents the tradition, history and beliefs of a nation and its people. Hence, it helps evoke feelings of patriotism among the country’s citizens and reminds them of their nation’s glory, beauty and rich heritage.
Anthem brings all the citizens together. When they stand and sing together, it creates an environment of patriotism, the people feel like they have to do something for their nation. it also binds the citizens. The lyrics of the national anthem tell about the history, culture and traditions of the people.
Anthem of every country has positive impact on the people, culture and tradition. The Anthem is one of the main aspects of every Nation which signifies its status on which the people of that Nation can be proud of. Usually, anthems speak about struggle, war and pain to achieve freedom; revolution and progress; victories and triumphs. It helps ignite patriotism in people and it is the motivation that we need often.
It is a journey to understand the traditions and values that still hold strong as the backbone of a country, the values that are personified by its common men and women who work tirelessly, with integrity and courage, in order to make a difference, because they understand the power and responsibility of being a citizen.
Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom being a visionary leader, initiated the idea of an anthem for the state in 2019 and got the backing of the state House of Assembly which made it compulsory for the state anthem to be recited after the National anthem at schools and public functions across the state.
It is however, worrisome that almost three years after the introduction of the anthem, schools in the state, both public and private, do not consider it a necessity let alone reciting it. By now, it is expected that the anthem should have been on the lips of every Benue child. It is the responsibility of the state Ministry of Education to ensure compliance since the governor can not do it all alone.
I remember during my compulsory one year National Youth Service in Abeokuta, Ogun State in 1997, corps members were taught the state anthem right from the orientation Camp. In fact, the anthem was included in the NYSC hand book for corps members. By the time I left the orientation camp for my place of primary assignment, which happened to be a public school, the state anthem was usually recited by the students immediately after the National anthem. I think it will be in the best interest of the state and children yet born for this feat to be replicated in Benue State.
I call on those concerned to rise up to their responsibilities and ensure that this lofty idea of the governor does not die after he leaves office.
The Speaker, Benue State House of Assembly, Hon. Titus Uba, had said during the process of giving the state Anthem legal backing that it would foster unity of purpose among the citizens of Benue State.
Below is the Benue anthem:
We are able to go up and take Benue State
To possess the land from North to South
Though the giants may be on the way to hinder
God will surely give us victory
Only move on to the Righteous side
Move on to the righteous side
Move on to the righteous side with God
Move on to the righteous side (x2)
Move on to the righteous side with God.
I look forward to the day when we will all move to the righteous side with God.