A nine-year-old girl originally from Nigeria has vowed to ‘be the best she can be’ for Belfast as she took the reins as Lord Mayor for the day. Ezinne Nwosu won a competition to be named First Citizen, after writing about her hopes for the city to become more diverse. The budding politician visited her school Holy Family PS in north Belfast where she met with her proud parents and teachers as part of her mayoral duties and shared her aspirations.
”As the Mayor of Belfast, I want to make sure I try my best for the whole community and for every person who lives here,” she said.
”Making sure that my duties and responsibilities are completed is very important to me. I want to make sure that I do them properly and be the best I can be. I am not only doing this for myself, but for everyone that lives in Belfast.”
Her fellow P5 pupils wanted to know answers to the burning questions - like how heavy is the mayoral chain and what she got for lunch as mayor.. The role of the inaugural junior Lord Mayor is a post pioneered by Cllr Kate Nicholl.
The current First Citizen made Belfast her home from Zimbabwe back when she was a girl.
“Ezinne is phenomenal. I mean, she's an amazing young woman,” she said.
“She has such a wonderful vision for what the city can be. She wants it to be welcoming and safe for everyone. And I just know that anyone who sees her, especially of her age, will be inspired.
Tura Arutura, from Africa House commended Ezinne’s efforts, saying young people of all races should participate in politics.
He said: “It must be welcomed and embraced, particularly when you consider that they are the future leaders of our society.”
North Belfast may be thousands of miles away from Nigeria, but it's now where Ezinne and her family firmly call home and a place where she is making her mark at a young age.