By Chris Ochayi
ABUJA â€” Nigeria and Chinese governments yesterday signed N107.4 million contracts agreement for the construction of four rural primaries schools in four states of the federation. The benefitting states are Katsina, Kaduna and Ogun states as well as the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Minister of State for Education, Hajiya Aishatu Dukku, who signed on behalf of the Federal Government, explained that the project was Chinese government-assisted aimed to improve the education standard in the country.
She said the project would also help to compliment the Federal Governmentâ€™s initiative to accomplish the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the Education for All (EFA) goals by 2015.
Thanking the Chinese government for what she described as “kind gesture” and immense contribution to the development of the educational sector in the country, the minister recalled that the Chinese government had consistently assisted Nigeria with many projects in the education sector since in the seventies.
According to her, â€œthis particular assistance is unique and significant because it arises from the forum of China-African Cooperation (FOCAC) where the Chinese President, Mr. Hu Jintao, magnanimously approved the construction of hundred rural primary schools in different African countries with four being allocated to Nigeria, the highest a single country received in Africa.â€
Signing for Chinese government, Mr. Wang Lei, the Charge dâ€™Affaires, Chinese Embassy, Abuja explained that though China is still a developing country, and could provide assistance only within its capacity, but Chinaâ€™s assistance is sincere and unselfish.
Mr. Lei explained further that China never attaches any political conditions or demands any political privileges in providing aid to other developing countries.
Explaining the rationale behind the gesture, he said: â€œEducation is of crucial importance to the development of any nation, and we appreciate that education is included in the 7-Point Agenda of President Umaru Yarâ€™Adua.â€