By Mashe Umaru Gwamna
The Former Director, Training, National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), Mrs. Bridgette R. Yerima has assumed the leadership of the
Institute as Director, overseeing the office of the Executive Secretary.
Her appointment followed the exit of Mr. Louis Eriomala from service on Friday, April 17 at the compulsory retirement age of 60 years as stipulated by Civil Service Law.
The appointment as announced on NICO website was said to have been approved by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, Deaconess Grace Isu Gekpe.
The e-mail titled, ‘Handover to the Most Senior Director in NICO” dated April, 20 and signed by the Deputy Director in the office of the Permanent Secretary, Akudo-Nwoso Nwosu, had directed the immediate past Director overseeing the office of the Executive Secretary, Eriomala, to handover the affairs of the Institute.
The mail read in part: “I am directed to request you to handover the affairs of the agency as well as forward all relevant circulars urgently to the aforementioned director on receipt of this mail.”
Mrs. Yerima joined the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture in 1987 as Cultural Officer. She was among the first set of officers to be deployed to the National Troupe of Nigeria when it was created.
There, she served in different capacities including officer overseeing the welfare of artistes; head of administration; Public Relations Officer as well as Marketing Officer until her transfer to the National Institute for cultural Orientation (NICO) in 1997 as Assistant Chief Programmes Officer.
When NICO’s administrative head office relocated to Abuja and with the commencement of active training, Mrs. Yerima became the first coordinator of Training and Orientation for the Institute. She coordinated the first batch of training programmes for culture officers leading to the Award of Post Graduate Diploma in Cultural Administration under the guidance and leadership of the then Executive Secretary of the Institute, J. B. Yusuff,
With the creation of a full-fledged department for training for the Institute in 2010, Mrs. Yerima was posted to head the Lagos Liaison Office.
Under her leadership as the Liaison Officer, major programmes of the Institute including the Annual Round Table Conference for Cultural Orientation (ARTCCO); Nigerian Indigenous Language Programme (NILP); Weekend Indigenous Language Programme; Language in the Barracks as well as the Annual Children’s Cultural Extravaganza, were initiated.
It was also during her tenure as Head, Lagos Liaison office that the Institute organized notable programmes such as workshop for traditional rulers.
Mrs. Yerima was promoted to head the Institute’s Training School as Director in 2013, a responsibility she successfully sustained till her new appointment.