By Josephine Obute
Lagos – Former Miss Nigeria, Chioma Obiadi and some other Nigerians on Wednesday said that young girls were still accepting flowers and cards as gifts during Valentine season.
They told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in separate interviews that the advent of the computer age and introduction of smart phones had not stopped the age long tradition.
NAN reports that there was a school of thought that said that giving flowers and cards as gifts during Valentine’s Day had become obsolete and overtaken by sms messages and other creations on smart phones and android phones.
NAN reports that this year’s Valentine’s Day celebration coincided with the observance of Ash Wednesday by some Christian denominations when they commenced the 40-day Lenten season that would end of Holy Saturday.
According to the immediate past Miss Nigeria, Chioma Obiadi, flowers have strong emotional value in the hearts of girls which cannot be likened to prints on the social media.
“I strongly believe that cards do have an indelible emotional attraction to both sense of sight and touch unlike the messages on social media,” she told NAN
An entertainment expert, handling “yyookos’’ Global Concepts, Adelokiki Adeyomi, said that flowers were still in vogue but usually presented as gifts in a more matured way.
“Flower says a lot from the giver to the receiver compared to cards; it shows an accurate expression of love from the giver, unlike the cards that merely inform,” he said.
Olaoluwa Abagun, the Executive Director of Girl Child Circle, an NGO, told NAN that the motive behind the gift was more important than the physical worth.
“Truly, many girls look down on flowers and cards in an age where iphones and cars are the trending gift items.
“However, I personally believe that the noble intention behind gifting is more valuable than the material worth of the gift itself,” he told NAN.
A Kenyan school teacher, Mrs Irene Pierre-Louis, also told NAN on phone that Kenyan girls were still accepting flowers as gifts during Valentine Season because they had greater impact than any other gift.
“Of course, our girls do welcome guys who still give out flowers, it is more mature and classical than sending one a whatsApp message or Facebook greetings,’’ she said.
Similarly, Richard Akinlade, an event manager, and a Master of Ceremonies, (MC) said that flowers carry more emotion than print from the giver.
“Giving flowers, though an alien practice is symbolic because it tells a better expression of one’s feelings of love and beauty that flower represents,” he said.
However, Adebowale Akanbi-Akinlade, the 2013 Most Beautiful Girl in Ogun, believed some Nigerian girls presently were not accepting flowers as gifts on Valentine’s Day because of the craze of materialism.
“ I wish to say that 30 per cent of those not exposed might still accept it and I think Nigerian girls accept more valuable gifts, such as Iphones, wigs, shoes and bags,” she said.
NAN reports that Valentine’s Day began as a liturgical celebration; St. Valentine of Rome was imprisoned for wedding soldiers who were forbidden from marrying.
He also ministered to Christians, who were persecuted under the Roman Empire.
The legend during his imprisonment healed the daughter of his jailer, Asterius.
Valentine’s Day has metamorphosed into an occasion where lovers expressed their love for each other through the presentation of flowers, offering confectionery, and sending greeting cards.