By Bukar Bolori
The Federal Government has declared 5 October of every year as the National Day of Senior Citizens.
This was disclosed on Friday, 17 December, 2021 by the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, while representing President Muhammadu Buhari, as the Special Guest of Honour at the First Presidential Summit on Ageing which took place in Abuja.
He also disclosed that the Federal Government has concluded plans for a “progressive registration of all senior citizens of 60 years and above with the issuance of identity cards for ease of accessing considerable discounts and dignifying age-friendly treatments and courtesies in public services and spaces”.
The theme of the Summit is “Building Inter-generational Synergies for Inclusive, Cohesive and Sustainable Communities”.
The summit was organised by the National Senior Citizens Centre (NSCC) in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, headed by Hajiya Sadiya Umar Farouq.
According to Ogbeni Aregbesola, the declaration of the Day for Senior Citizens in Nigeria is in line with the UN International Day of Older Persons celebrated annually on 1st October.
“The administration of President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the National Policy on Ageing in 2020 to address the special needs and harness opportunities in the increasing number of older persons in Nigeria, this is in addition to the establishment of the National Senior Citizens Centre in June 2021.
“The ageing population in Nigerian constitute 4.7% of our population which equates to approximately over 9 million people. This age bracket of people is characterised by those who have given their best towards the development of our nation,” Aregbesola said