Showing posts with label stakeholders. Show all posts
Showing posts with label stakeholders. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Firm, NMA propose 21-day campaign against communicable diseases

Reckitt Benckiser and the Nigerian Medical Association have called on government and other stakeholders involved in the fight against communicable diseases to promote a 21-day hand washing campaign across the country.
According to them, this campaign will educate Nigerians and increase awareness on hand washing as a means to killing bacteria and germs which cause communicable

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Teachers, pupils groan as Kogi flood affects 54,000 children

Some residents including pupils fleeing one of the flooded communities.

As flood sacked many schools in Kogi State, stakeholders have expressed worry about the impact of school closure on pupils, SUCCESS NWOGU writes

Kogi State Commissioner for Education, Mrs. Grace Elebiyo, tutors and pupils in Lokoja, the state capital, have said the current flooding of about nine local government areas and about 332 communities in the state is negatively affecting education in the state.

Elebiyo, in an interview with our correspondent on Thursday, said though she could not categorically give the exact number of schools and pupils affected by the flood disaster, about 54,000 pupils in about 270 schools in the councils would have been affected by the closure of schools.

She added that the flood would affect the performance of some of the pupils eligible for the West African Senior Secondary Certificate Examinations next year. She, however, stated that the diligent ones would still be reading at home and might not be so much adversely affected.

She stated that for the West African Examination Council registration, the principals of the affected schools already have the number of pupils moving into SSS3 for the WAEC registration. She added that the number could easily be ascertained through the transition examination as the pupils had done their last tests.

“The flood has adversely affected education. About nine local government areas are being affected by flood. Many schools have been closed down because of the flood, while we have some schools being used as relief camps for the flood victims. There are many affected schools but I have not got the accurate number of the closed schools. But in each council, we have about 30 schools. I cannot say the accurate number but there is no way we would not have about 200 pupils in each of the schools,” she said.

Elebiyo, who said that by December the schools would be re-opened, added that the state government had provided relief materials to the affected pupils to cushion the effects of the disaster. “For now, we want to make sure that the affected schools are closed down temporarily; it appears that there is no solution for now.

“Some of the pupils of the affected schools will sit for the same examination with their counterparts who are not affected. Therefore when this problem is over, there will be extension of school programme. That is the only way we can solve the problem,” Elebiyo said.

In separate interviews with our correspondent on Wednesday, the tutors and pupils stated that the flood had put candidates sitting for WASSCE in precarious situation. They added that even for those whose schools had not been shut down, both the teachers and pupils especially in Lokoja were subjected to great hardship owing to gridlock on the roads. They said this situation had made many of them to come late to schools.

The Principal, Government Day Secondary School, Adankolo, Lokoja, Mr. Edward Olorundare, said pupils in the affected areas planning to sit for the WASSCE might fail as they would be forced to stay off the schools for many months.

He added that some of the pupils in a bid to pass WASSCE might cheat. According to him, many of the teachers, other workers and pupils in areas not yet affected by the flood in Lokoja are now forced to come to school late due to long queues of vehicles, especially trailers.

“The flood is seriously and negatively affecting education. There are many schools especially in the submerged councils that have been shut down. Those children are disadvantaged, especially those sitting for the WASSCE. WAEC organises international examination. Ghana and some other West African countries are writing it. If they are not affected by the flood, it means that their schools would be in session. But here, where the flood is affecting people, the pupils are disadvantaged.

“It has affected us seriously in the school. It has even affected our punctuality and attendance. Most of the people who are displaced are leaving far away. The few roads have been taken over by trailers.

“It will affect the pupils’ performance because by the time the school is closed down and when pupils are coming back, it might be for exams and we are talking about examination malpractice and we are not doing anything to prevent it. How will a pupil who is sitting down at home for three months and is to take exam not fail or engage in examination malpractice in a bid to pass? Definitely, he will cheat,” he said.

Olorundare, whose school is also being threatened by flood, said it was unfortunate that the school did not have accurate information on the flow of the flood.

He stated that though the school had made contingency arrangement, it might be forced to temporarily close if the flood eventually submerges it.

The Vice-Principal, Administration, St. Lukes UBE J.S.S, Lokoja, Mrs. Mary Iselewa, said since some schools in the state had been closed because of the flood, many pupils were no longer serious with their studies.

She stated that some of the pupils now prefer to watch films and play football. “Some schools in the state have been closed down because of the flood. The flood has actually negatively affected education in Kogi State because when schools are even in session, some of the pupils are not even ready to face their studies seriously. They prefer watching films and playing football. When they are in the school, at least they will read their books and when assignments are given to them, they will do them. But now that they are free, since many schools have been closed down because of the flood, many of the pupils now go and watch the flood to see the extent of the damage it has caused victims.

“Also, some of them will say ‘we are no longer in school, there is no need to read and nobody will give us assignment. It is only when we are in school that we need to settle down and study but when we are not in school, we are free,” Iselewe said.



Another school administrator in Lokoja who pleaded anonymity, urged Nigerian leaders to be more proactive and to implement policies that would advance education and reduce the hardship in the land.

He claimed that the major problems facing Nigeria were lack of foresight and poor planning by its leaders. He said many times, the nation’s leaders went abroad and failed to show that they had learnt something useful in the area of governance.

According to him, Many Nigerians are sad and angry, noting the need for a rethink and change of attitude by the nation’s leaders. “What we are saying is that our leaders should be more proactive. They should plan ahead. There was a time that the late President Umaru Yar’Adua came to inaugurate the dredging of the River Niger in this state. After he died, that effort stopped.

“Assuming that the river was well-dredged, the water level would have been deep and this disaster would not have happened. It is after the havoc has been done that the Federal Government is sending construction giants to dredge the River Niger. Do you know that this volume of water that is wasting could be harvested and used for irrigation? If Israel had the type of water we have, in fact it would be the highest producer of food in the world. But look at how we are wasting it and it is even causing havoc to the people,” he said.

A pupil, Ahmed Kabir, said pupils in the state were not happy because of the flood had made some of their schools to either close down temporarily or converted to relief camps for flood victims.

Another pupil from St. Lukes UBE JSS, Adankolo said many of the pupils were no longer in school. She called on the government to build relief camps for the displaced people and return their classrooms to them so that they could continue with their studies.

Another pupil, Maryam Usman, said many homes had been devastated because of the flood while many pupils lost their books and uniforms to the flood. “I am not happy because of the flood. It has destroyed many homes and affected our education,” she said.


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Olayinka Oladunjoye

Source : punchng[dot]com


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