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UNICEF’s GEP Project Enrolls 1.1m Girls In schools In Bauchi

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Our Correspondent, Bauchi

The United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF), Field Office, Bauchi, said it has enrolled 1.1 million girls in schools in Bauchi State.

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Mr Zighe Icunoamlak, the Officer in charge of the Field Office, Bauchi, made this disclosure on Wednesday, during a stakeholders meeting, at the Emir’s Palace, Bauchi.

Icunoamlak said the feat was achieved under the Girls Education Programme (GEP), implemented by the UNICEF and other development partners.

He said GEP was being implemented in Alkaleri; Shira, Ningi, Ganjuwa, Zaki and Toro Local Government Areas of the state.

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READ ALSO: UNICEF-EU Renovates 104 PHCs, Hands Over To Government In Bauchi

According to him, the school enrollment for the girl child has increased to 1,130,456 since inception of the programme, in the participating councils.

“It is believed that at the end of 2020, the GEP 3 must have succeeded in getting approximately 214,758 additional girls into school in Bauchi State.

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“It is a milestone feat to have gotten up to 1,130,456 girls’ enrollment in schools in the state,” he said.

He explained that, based on the identified barriers and bottlenecks to girl’s education in the state, “GEP3 Theory of Change” and interventions, were planned to reduce these barriers to deliver results under three outputs.

He listed the three key areas to include; increased enrolment and retention for girls in basic education, improved capacity of teachers to deliver effective learning for girls and improved governance to strengthen girls’ education.

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READ ALSO: COVID-19: UNICEF Backs Govts On School Reopening

The UNICEF official noted that it was imperative to get the commitment and endorsement of the community leaders and other stakeholders, on the need to establish local accountability framework to ensure sustainability of the programme.

“With the programme coming to an end on 30 June, 2021, it becomes very important to identify the lessons learnt and good practices from the GEP3 to ensure the gains are not lost.

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“Therefore, this gathering today is to get the commitment and endorsement of the Emirate Council with stakeholders, on establishment of local accountability systems for the sustainability of GEP 3, in Bauchi State.

“I assure you that UNICEF is committed to sustaining support to Nigerian government at the Federal and state levels, to ensure quality education and development of children.

“UNICEF commends everyone for their support to education and reiterates her commitment to continue to partner with the government, and all stakeholders to ensure that all school-aged children in Nigeria access their right to quality education,” he said.

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Responding, the Emir of Bauchi, Alhaji Rilwanu Adamu, commended UNICEF and other partners for their continuous support for the state in healthcare and education development.

READ ALSO: 2023: Group Wants Immediate Past Chief Of Air Staff To Be Bauchi Governor

Adamu said girl child education was particularly important, to the development of the society, adding that: “educating a girl child was equivalent to educating a nation.”

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The Emir who is also the Chairman, Bauchi State Council of Emirs assured that GEP 3 programme would change the narrative of the girl- child education in the state.

He said that traditional institutions in the state were ready to support any programme that brought positive impacts on the lives of the people of the state.

GEP 3 is an eight-year project that sought to ensure more girls completed basic education and acquired skills for livelihoods.

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GEP 3 is being implemented in Katsina, Sokoto, Bauchi, Niger, and Zamfara states.

The programme is being managed by UNICEF, in partnership with the federal and state governments.

GEP 3 is being funded by Foreign and Commonwealth Development Organisation (FCDO), which was aimed at improving access, retention and learning outcomes for girls

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ASUU Strike: NANS To Block PH International Airport, Calabar-Itu Highway

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The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), South-South zone has threatened to block the Portharcourt International Airport, the Calabar-Itu highway and shut down critical infrastructures in the zone if the strike by the Association of Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) persists.

The South-South Coordinator, NANS ZONE B, Kings Tamarapreye disclosed this over the weekend during a press conference in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State capital.

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Urging ASUU to heed to court and call off the 8-month- old strike, NANS urged the federal government to also accede to the demands of ASUU saying that students suffer the most.

Tamarapreye threatened that if NANS demands are not considered, their next action may be ‘worse than the EndSARS protest.

The statement read in parts, “As the leadership of NANS ZONE B, we wish to restate our total commitment towards the return of Nigerian students to the various campuses.

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“We give a vote of confidence to comrade Usman Barambu-led administration for a job Weldon in bridging the gap between the federal government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).

“We reaffirm our total stand by calling the body to honour the order of reopening the institutions as we equally call on the federal government to as a matter of urgency subscribe to the demands of ASUU.

READ ALSO: Mysterious How Adamu, Ngige Still In Office While ASUU Strike Persists – Rights Activist

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“It is on record that in this particular Zone (NANS Zone B, South-South), we have led several forms of protest to see how we can return students to school because the main reason we were elected leaders is to prioritize the welfare of the students.

“It is a sad thing that for eight months now, Nigerian students are still at home. It is on record that we have blocked the roads of Akwa Ibom and the Cross River States in solidarity.

“There was a memo for the mobilization of the nation shut down and it is still on course. As we are appealing to ASUU to listen to the court order and return to school, if they fail, we will mobilize and shut down the whole country because the federal government has been so nonchalant to education in this country.

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“We all know that education in this country is underfunded and we will not fold our arms, it is time we take our destinies into our hands. In this South-South region, we are going to block the Portharcourt International airport, block Calabar-Itu highway as well as other infrastructures.”

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Strike: Shift Grounds In The interest Of Nigerian Students, Kumuyi Tells FG, ASUU

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The General Overseer of the Deeper Life Bible Church, Pastor W. F Kumuyi, has urged the Federal Government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASSU, to shift grounds in resolving the conflict between them in the interest of Nigerian students.

Kumuyi made the call in Minna while fielding questions from journalists in Minna, Niger State during his six-day Global Crusade with Kumuy.

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He said he personally believes dialogue is the only forward out of the impasse.

He stated, “To ameliorate and solve the problem, I think we should be looking at how A should be looking for what will satisfy B and B should be looking for what will satisfy A.”

Kumuyi argued that fighting between the opposing institutions would not bring about the much desired peace and resolution of the crisis, insisting that the price must come from both sides.

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The cleric maintained, “On the conflict we have between government and higher institutions. I believe that dialogue is the way forward. I believe rioting and so on is not the way out, mark my words, I didn’t say will not; but may not solve the problem.”

“When two instructions or two opposing bodies have a challenge, one should look at the challenge from the point of view of the other person. The universities should be looking at what the government can do and the government should be looking at how to solve the problem.”

READ ALSO: FG Gives Update On ASUU Strike As Lecturers Extend Industrial Action

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Asked if God has spoken to him on the 2023 general elections, Kumuyi noted, “I cannot tell lies, God has not told me anything about 2023. He has not found me fit to tell me. He will not tell any man everything”

He continued, “He (God) may tell Moses to do something and may tell Joshua another thing. He might tell Paul something and not tell Peter. Who am I to question him? I cannot tell God, this is my country, why have you told me this or that”.

Calling on the youth in the build up towards 2023 general elections, the G.O stated, “young people should exercise their rights, they should use their intelligence to get us people that would get us to where we are going.”

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JUST IN: UNIBEN VC Prof Lilian Salami Elected As Chairman Committee Of Vice-Chancellors

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The Committee of Vice-Chancellors of Nigerian Federal Universities (CVCNU) has elected the Vice-Chancellor of University of Benin (UNIBEN), Prof. Lilian Salami as chairman.

The Secretary General, Prof. Yakubu Ochefu, made the announcement in a statement on Thursday.

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The new chairman was unanimously elected at its virtual/physical meeting held at its secretariat in Abuja.

Ochefu said the Vice-Chancellor of Bayero University, Kano (BUK), Prof. Sagir Abbas was elected as the Alternate Chairman.

The secretariat wished the two members of the Executive Board of the Committee success as they take over the mantle of leadership.

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READ ALSO: ASUU Strike: UNIBEN Staff Commits Suicide Over Financial Difficulties

Salami becomes the second female VC to head the committee. Until now, Salami was the Alternate Chairman to Prof. Sulyman Abdulkareem.

Abdulkareem will complete his tenure as the Vice-Chancellor, University of Ilorin (UNILORIN) on October 15.

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