BY ROBERT ELEMA 

 
YUMBE. Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), a non governmental organisation implementing Acclerated Education Program(AEP) in the refugee hosting schools in Yumbe district is engaging the schools under the program to participate in Music Dance and Drama(MDD)activities.
MDD is one of the neglected co-curricular activities in the schools in Yumbe district but recently the West Nile regional MDD competition held in Yumbe recently opened the eyes of the education department as such they are advocating for the revival  of MDD activities in the district.
NRC for the second time has planned to organise MDD competitions at school levels in the ten schools where it’s operating in the first week of October.
The theme of the competition is; “Stop early marriage for a better future” and the items to be presented include poem, drama, traditional folk song and traditional dance.
Speaking during the planning meeting at NRC boardroom on Thursday, Mr Azizi Draku the project education officer said NRC has done much in schools they support when it comes to recreational activities.
He said the ten AEP centres and the host schools supported by NRC under UNICEF project have received so many kits to prepare children for recreational activities.
“We had given for two years schools drums and other materials to ensure that the clubs we have at our schools are put functional. Not all children are academicians others were given talents outside the classroom situations and that is what NRC is supporting so we want the schools to embrace it,” he said.
He said it’s the role of the schools, teachers and patrons of MDD to develop such talents in the children.
Mr Robert Aziku a music tutor from St John Bosco core PTC Lodonga said MDD is one of the key areas in education department which has been neglected by most of the stakeholders.
 “The performing arts is an area that schools don’t focus on yet it’s one of the areas that can develop the talents of the children but it has been neglected,” he said.
“I am appreciative to NRC for focussing on some of the neglected areas like doctors focussing on neglected tropical diseases. That is our disease in education system so we want the teachers who have skills in MDD to teach the skills to the children because they need it,” he added.
Mr Godfrey Drapari the MDD patron for Swinga Islamic primary school said children like MDD but they are not given the opportunity.
“Children have different talents but if we(teachers) don’t exploit it, the talents will die. MDD is a career through which one can earn a living an it has many aspects like drama, peom, traditional dance, original composition among others so if a person is not good in one aspect, he/she can fit in another aspect,” he said.
He said MDD activities should be taken seriously in the district like other co-curricular activities such as ball games and athletics.
Ms Clara Amatiyo the MDD matron for Ariwa primary school said; “It’s normally hard for the school Head teachers to support MDD departments though they struggle to push work plan for MDD activities for budgeting. We want the education department to wake up and emphasise the issue of MDD to the Head teachers so that the activities are supported.”
She appealed to NRC to bring on board all the schools in the district to participate in MDD activities because in the regional MDD festival, Yumbe was represented by only two schools that is Nyoko and Swinga Islamic primary schools.
End.