The Minister of State for Education, Mr Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, has lauded the Sokoto State Government for successful enrolment of 75,650 out-of-school children.
Nwajiuba gave the commendation at the launching of Better Education Service Delivery for All (BESDA) programme in Sokoto.
The minister said that the figures were out of the estimated 436,570 children as contained in the 2018 National Personnel Audit Report.
He said that the Federal Government initiated the programme with a 611 million U.S dollars credit grant aimed at strengthening the Universal Basic Education, being part of the first pillar of the Ministerial Strategic Plan (MSP), which is Out-of-School children.
”Education is critical to national development, the reason why our educational system is structured to prepare the children for responsible citizenship and national development.
”No nation can rise above the level of its educational development; for any country to develop, it must have a well-developed educational system.
”The system shall equip people and prepare them with adequate knowledge that will enable them to take advantage of the 21st century knowledge-driven economy,” Nwajiuba said.
He said that Nigeria has the highest number of out-of-school children in sub-Saharan Africa, which necessitated the strengthening of quality of basic education.
”Since inception of BESDA, 1,053,422 out-of-school children were enrolled out of the previous figures of 10, 193,918 out-of-school children in the country,” the minister said.
He commended Gov. Aminu Tambuwal on his administration’s investment in education, urged his lieutenants to continue to support him in order to achieve the desired impacts.
In his remarks, Tambuwal confirmed that the state recorded enrollment of 75,650 out-of-school children in schools across the 23 local government areas.
He said 44,550 of the total enrolment were girls, while 31,100 were boys, adding that the state had improved the literacy rate of 10,159 children in 1,513 learning centres across the 23 local government education areas.
The governor explained that 1,513 mentors and facilitators were engaged and trained to handle the centres.
He said that 125,394 copies of pupils’ text books and 5,076 teachers’ guides on Hausa and English Languages were procured and distributed to schools.
In the area of literacy, the governor said that the BESDA team focussed on eight local government areas as there were other development partners like NEI doing the same in some selected areas.
He said that the state had already reviewed its Medium Term Basic Education Strategy Plan (MTBESP) and the 2019/2020 annual school census was in progress.
BESDA data banks, Tambuwal said, were established in the 23 local government areas of the state.
He said that the state government would continue execution of right projects and as well ensure prompt payment of counterpart funding to developmental partners to ensure maximum development.