By Dirisu Yakubu
ABUJA — Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu is convinced the strides by the State Education Programme Investment Project (SEPIP) would help reposition the Nigerian education system in the years ahead. Adamu was speaking at the Joint National Project Steering Committee Meeting of SEPIP and the Nigeria Partnership for Education Project (NIPEP) which held at the Federal Ministry of Education, Federal Secretariat, Abuja.
Represented by the Minister of State, Professor Anthony Anwukah, Adamu said SEPIP, an initiative of the World Bank, has recorded giant strides in stemming the menace of out-of-school-children in the three pilot states where the scheme has been operating in the last six months. Like SEPIP, the minister also noted with delight the impressive steps taken by NIPEP in tackling learning challenges in selected five states in the federation.
“SEPIP is making concerted effort in addressing lack of teachers in core subjects of English, Mathematics and Sciences, through revised deployment policy and teacher incentives” he said, adding that in no distant time, the impact of the project would be felt across all states of the federation.
Adamu said, “in a bid to increase access to basic education for out-of-school children, especially for girls, 14, 850 pupils out of the targeted 33, 000 for the year 2015 were given scholarships. And 6, 996 girls benefitted from the scheme in Kano while 7, 856 girls were beneficiaries in Katsina State while Kaduna and Jigawa accounted for 4, 637 and 5, 000 respectively.”
Given the consistent campaign for delivery of educational services, the minister said this is empirical to show that great impact is being felt in some states where the scheme is being implemented.
“Bauchi State has moved up in their position in the WAEC examination from 36th position in 2014 to 31st in 2015” he said, adding that “the result of WAEC and NECO have shown tremendous improvement for Ekiti State, where having 5 credits and above, including English Language and Mathematics, rose from 23 per cent in 2012 to 34 per cent in 2014, and to 42 per cent in 2016 in WAEC results; and from 31 per cent in 2012 to 96 per cent (first position) in 2016 in NECO results.”
In his goodwill message, representative of the World Bank, Tunde Adekola described Mallam Adamu Adamu as a man committed to the ideals of education, stressing in that in a short period of time, the Ministry under his supervision has recorded tremendous growth in many indices, including children enrollment and quality of teachers now plying their trade in public schools across the land. He pledged the commitment of the World Bank to the continuous partnership with other development partners in funding education in the country.