*Says govt will monitor their educational progress, commit billions to sector this year
*History’ll be kind to you: PTA Chair Oniye, Adaramaja tell Gov
By; BILIQIS ONAOLAPO OLAJUMOKE, ilorin
Kwara State Governor, AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq has presented N6m cheques to the six public school students who recently won the presidential debate competition in Abuja.
That was a fulfillment of his administration’s pledge to give the great six one million naira each alongside a full scholarship for their first degree in any public tertiary institution in Nigeria.
The six public school students are: Mashood Kamaldeen (Government Secondary School, Ilorin East LG); Jatto Ramatallahi (Offa Grammar School, Offa); Jimoh Abayomi Emmanuel (Tanke Community Junior Secondary School, Ilorin South); Emmanuel Chioma (St. Anthony Junior Secondary School, Ilorin East); Dolapo Mariam (Offa Grammar School, Offa); and AbdulKareem Uswat ( Okelele Junior Secondary School Ilorin East).
AbdulRazaq congratulated them and their parents on the feat, saying the government will continue to monitor their educational programme to succeed in life.
“Once again, I congratulate the victorious students of the 2023 Presidential School Debate of Nigeria. We are happy about the feat. You’ve made us proud in Kwara state. We are committed to your progress and we will continue to monitor that,” the Governor said.
He said billions of naira will be committed this year to various educational and hygiene programmes, such as AGILE and WASH, to aid learning and improve the safety of pupils in schools.
“We continue to make sure you, and indeed every Kwara child, have a very conducive environment to learn. That is why Kwara is one of the states that engage in the FG/World bank-supported AGILE project (Adolescent Girls Initiative for Learning and Empowerment). We shall be making full advocacy about other programmes the state has subscribed to over the coming months as well,” he said.
“This year, billions will be invested to improve educational curriculum and infrastructure in our schools. We are taking this very seriously. We will make sure we cover most schools as we go along.
“To the teachers and parents, I urge you to keep up your support for these kids and for their education. Let us continue to strengthen our patriotism to the state and to Nigeria as a whole.”
He appreciated the management and staff of the SUBEB for what he called a remarkable improvement in their commitment to work, and pledged his continued support to the agency to sustain the tempo.
AbdulRazaq also thanked the traditional institutions for their support and sought their continued engagement and suggestions that will improve service delivery in the education sector.
The ceremony was attended by some government officials and traditional chiefs, including the Chairman House Committee on Education Hon. Baba Muhammed Boriya; Hon. Mariam Yusuf Aladi; Hon AGF Sallaudeen; Chief of Staff to the Governor Prince AbdulKadir Mahe; Commissioner for Education and Human Capital Development Hajia Sa’adatu Modibbo Kawu; Commissioner for Communications Bola Olukoju; Chairman for Kwara SUBEB Prof Sheu Raheem Adaramaja; and parents and guardians of the victorious Team Kwara.
Others include Balogun Gambari of Ilorin Alhaji Adebayo Aliyu; Magaji Are Alhaji Aremu Subair; Balogun Fulani Alhaji Abubakar Atiku; Balogun Ajikobi Alhaji Isiaka Okunrinjeje; Balogun Alanamu Dr. Usman Abubakar Jos; Chairman Parents Teachers Association (PTA) Kwara state chapter and 1st Malama of Ilorin Alhaji Ibrahim Oniye; Baba Isale of Ilorin Alhaji Abdullahi Sidiq Baba-Ile Apa.
Adaramaja, for his part, thanked the Governor for keeping his promise to the debate champions, adding that the pupils will reciprocate by bringing home another trophy in subsequent competitions.
He said the Lucky Six will represent Nigeria at the World School Debate Championship in the Republic of Serbia in Europe later in July this year.
Alhaji Oniye thanked the Governor for his passion and commitment to the educational sector, and for his government’s investments in the lives of the victorious students.
He said history will be kind to him.
Dr Jato Muhammad Awal, one of the parents who spoke on behalf of others, said: “Your Excellency, you have a broad vision, and we have seen it manifesting. You have outlined the programmes you have in the future to expand the educational sector and further impact the lives of the people.
“We thank you most sincerely for what you are doing, what you have done, and what you are going to do. May Almighty Allah continue to bless you.”