Leo Igwe OP-ED Opinions 

Heart of Humanism

The Heart of Humanism award recognizes an individual who exemplifies humanist values. This year the recipient is Leo Igwe. Leo has been a friend of FBB for many years, having been pivotal in helping develop the program that became Humanist Action: Ghana. Leo is a Board Member of Humanists International and the Chair of the Board of Trustees for the Humanist Association of Nigeria. For decades, Leo has been a human rights advocate in Africa, focusing on the rights of women and children accused of witchcraft and protecting people against…

Read More
Nigeria Opinions 

pinion: Critical Thinking and Transformation of Teaching in Primary Schools

By Leo Igwe On July 1, 2021, I made a case for critical thinking in primary schools before teachers from state schools in Ibadan South-west local government in Nigeria. It was the first teacher training session on critical thinking for primary schools in the state. The organizers expected thirty to forty teachers, but at the end of the day, over fifty teachers attended the event. Critical reasoning skills cannot be delivered in schools without the support and cooperation of teachers. The workshop was devoted to making teachers understand the importance…

Read More
Northern Nigeria religion Opinions West Africa 

Discrimination Against Non-Muslim Students in Northern Nigeria

By Leo Igwe Students who do not profess Islam suffer discrimination in Muslim-dominated communities in Northern Nigeria. Unlike their Muslim counterparts, non-Muslims are, in some cases, denied places for worship, leadership positions, and the option to study other religious or non-religious subjects. Incidentally, not much is heard about these deprivations and prejudicial treatments. Many people fear speaking out against these injustices due to fear of suffering further victimization. Recently, a Christian young man, Peter, from Kaduna, broke his silence over these injustices. He recounted his experiences as a student at…

Read More
Africa's Youth Africa Lifestyle Opinions 

Critical Thinking Workshops: Preparing African School Children for Future Jobs

By Leo Igwe After decades of planning and setbacks, the project to introduce critical reasoning to primary schools took off in Ibadan in southwest Nigeria. The event, held on June 23, was not marked by any fun fare as we know it. But it was historic in every respect. Funmade Nursery and primary school, a little-known elementary school, located off Jericho-Eleyele road was the venue of the event. The school was the first primary school to host the first thought laboratory because it was the first primary school that agreed…

Read More
Opinions West Africa 

Witchcraft Persecution and Land Disputes in Amuda Isuochi, Abia State

By Leo IgweThere is a link between disputes over land and allegations of perpetrating occult harm in Abia state in Southern Nigeria. This connection, reinforced whenever some misfortune befalls any of the parties, has amply been illustrated by the case of Obioma Ubani from Amuda Isuochi, a village in the northern central part of Abia state. In May, an advocate drew the attention of AfAW to the case of Mr. Ubani. He is in his 70s. His villagers banished him for killing a family member through witchcraft. Videos and photos of Mr.…

Read More
Igwe Latest Lifestyle 

Tribute to My Father – Leo Igwe

By Leo Igwe I knew that this day would come. My mind had been psychologically prepared for it but I was unsure who would be the one paying tribute. I have been told that cats have nine lives. This characterization is because cats have the ability -and agility- to survive despite close encounters with death or disaster. My father, Oliver Iroanuonwu Igwe, was a cat. He had the phenomenal ability to defy life-threatening odds. He sailed through nine lives at the astonishment of many. Simply put, on many occasions, he…

Read More
Africa Opinions 

Religions and Persecution of Nonbelievers in Africa

By Leo Igwe The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) has, in a recent document, highlighted a critical aspect of humanism and religion in Africa-conditions of nonbelievers in the region. The document outlines challenges that Africans who do not identify with any religion face on the continent. It shows that while the number of those who identify as atheist, agnostic, freethinker, humanist, or secularist in Africa is growing, there are pervasive governmental restrictions and societal discriminations in various countries. This situation has made it difficult to measure and determine…

Read More
Africa Opinions 

Humanism and Stigma of Non-Religiosity in Africa

By Leo Igwe June is a special month for humanists and those who espouse a non-religious life stance around the globe. Put differently, June is the Humanist History Month. June 21 is world humanist day. On this day, humanists celebrate humanist ideals and values. Incidentally, the celebration of world humanist day happens mainly in the West because western countries have a long and strong tradition of humanism. Organized humanism has evolved over the years and continues to grow from strength to strength. The world humanist day is marked by lectures,…

Read More

Freedom of Religion or Belief and Non-Religious Persecution in Nigeria

All-Party Parliamentary Humanist Group Chair, Baroness Bakewell, Other distinguished parliamentarians, Fellow Humanists, Ladies and Gentlemen. When our forebears enshrined in article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights the right to freedom of religion or belief, they acknowledged the inalienability of the right to think and believe freely. They recognized that for societies to prosper and flourish, and for human beings to live in peace and harmony, governments must guarantee the equal right to freedom of thought and conscience for people of all faiths and none, in all places and at…

Read More
Fake News by Pastors Nigeria Opinions 

Sanction Okotie, Suleman, Oyakhilome for Spreading Misinformation About COVID-19 in Nigeria

By Leo Igwe The Advocacy for Alleged Witches (AfAW) urges the Nigerian government to sanction clerics who are spreading misinformation about the COVID-19 vaccine. This call has become necessary following declarations by pastors discouraging the public from taking the COVID-19 vaccine. Chris Okotie of the Household of God Church International Ministries has described the vaccine as “satanic”. For him, to take the vaccination to enter into an agreement with the devil. Linking the vaccination to eating genetically modified food, Okotie further noted that the vaccine would turn the vaccinated into…

Read More