Kwara State is first among the equals in the north central states for the approach it adopted for the ongoing development school infrastructure, the National APC Media team, who were on a working visit to the state made the verdict yesterday in Ilorin.
The Media organ of the party, led by Dr. Tom Ohikere has been in Kwara for a 3-day assessment of how the state is utilizing the UBEC's grant it received to develop basic schools, after being done with other states in the region.
"We have seen evidential achievements of the UBEC/SUBEB projects spread across the three senatorial districts. We were amazingly stunned by the quality of the projects executed. The construction and reconstruction of blocks of classrooms were massive. The training and retraining of teachers have been given a top-notch priority. And this is aimed at equipping the teachers to give a world class education to our children. Furthermore, the salaries, allowance, leave bonus and arrears, alongside the implementation of promotion of teachers are done at appropriate time.
"This is a legendary and commendable effort, given the fact that you (kwara) operate with an overburdened financial base. From what we observed, your whole approach to infrastructure development in schools is first among the equals in the north central," he said.
The event was well attended by the government functionaries including the deputy Governor Kayode Alabi, the Commissioner for Education, Sa'adatu Modibo Kawu and her counterpart in Finance, Florence Olasumbo Oyeyemi; Chief Whip Kwara House of Assembly, Hon. Ali Amuda; Chairman House Committee on Education, Hon. Baba Saliu Boriya; Hon. Awolola Ayokunnumi; State Secretary for APC, Mustapha Isowo and the Publicity Secretary, Tajudeen Aro; Special Adviser Political Communication, Alhaji Basir Adigun, Special Adviser Political, Abdullateef Alakawa; Special Adviser on Strategy, Saadu Salau; Alahji Gali Alaya, some Permanent Secretaries, representative of Kwara State Coordinator for UBEC, Mr Richard Adeoye among other dignitaries.
He said, they have the mandate as members of the APC News online to carry out the assessment tour of the UBEC/SUBEB projects in the state to authenticate and ascertain their standard, adding this forms a plan to promote the activities, achievements of the APC-led administration at various levels.
Dr. Ohikere observed that the government needs to improve on few areas like the enhancement of the curriculum of the state School for Special Needs; capacity building for the education secretaries in various local governments and the media unit the kwara SUBEB, announcing that they resolved to partner with the International Institute of Journalism to train some selected states on the specified fields.
He added that after a thorough inspection and evaluation they have nominated Katshina and Jigawa from North West; Kwara and Nasarawa from North Central; and Osun and Ogun from South Western zone to be recognized at the National Day of Public Commendation on APC revolution of basic education come in November, this year.
In his remarks, Kwara state Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq appreciated the visiting team for their objective assessment of the projects executed and assured them that actions will be taken to effect some of their recommendations at appropriate time.
AbdulRazaq, who spoke through Governor Kayode Alabi said no effort will be spared in the ongoing strive to reposition the education sector, even as he called on all relevant stakeholders to key in.
He expressed his delight at the dimension the Chairman of the state SUBEB, Professor adaramaja has been taking to place Kwara high and value driven with regard to project execution, citing a number of cases that guided his conviction about his capability to deliver on any given task.
"I am not really surprised at your appointment as Chairman of the Kwara SUBEB and what you have achieved in office, because I know your antecedents as a great performer. I normally tell people that only Nigerians can fix Nigeria and only Kwarans can fix Kwara, as in the case of Adaramaja. And one day, God will pay you back for what you are doing for future generations. I also thank the Ministry of Education for the support they are giving him to succeed," he said.
Adaramaja, for his part, said the team's appraisal and commendation were premised only on the 50 per cent projects executed, which his Agency categorized as phase one, adding that the phase two will kick-start by November and will come out much more award-winning for the state.
The SUBEB Chairman thanked the state government for consistent support and how Governor AbdulRazaq has been committed to achieve great for the education sector in the state.
"What the committee has seen and worked on is just 50 per cent of our projects. We released projects for 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017. By next month or so, we hope to release projects for 2018 and 2019 by the special grace of God. If 50% of our assessment has made us enter the first 6th, by the time we are done with the remaining 50%, I don't know which position we will reach. I'm sure that Kwara will emerge number one in the country. We still want you to come back in the next four or five months, you will see effective, efficient and prudent utilization of marching grants in Kwara State".
"For this, I thank the Governor for his fatherly role and for being on the neck of the UBEC at all times to realize much, and for particularly supporting the SUBEB to come out flying. We will continue to make you proud," he said.
Atere Abiola Ameenat
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