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Community seeks help to rehabilitate 6 collapsed classrooms in Kaduna

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School

Kubau (Kaduna State) May 9,2019Some parents in Kubau, Kaduna State have called for support to rehabilitate Unguwan Diri Primary School which has virtually collapsed, leaving over 700 pupils to study in the open.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the school had six classrooms and a staff room all of which had  no roof or furniture, forcing pupils to sit on the floor and take lessons under the sun.

Already, two of the classrooms had  caved in as  parents make frantic efforts to save the school.

Alhaji Sale Danjuma, Chairman of the school’s Management Committee, said many children in the area were not enrolled in school due to inadequate space.

According to him, the school was initially built by the community before it was taken over by the state Universal Basic Education Board.

“We lack enough schools in our community, so 12 years ago, we as parents collectively agreed to help ourselves by building this school from mud for our children since our cries to goverment to provide us with one turned on deaf ears.

“After building the classrooms, we approached the Council Chairman as at then and pleaded with him to provide teachers who can  tutor our children.

“The chairman appreciated our efforts and then set up a committee that transformed it into a UBE school. We were provided with five teachers and we got five volunteers from amongst our children to teach there, ” he said.

Danjuma said the school began with a few children but now had about 738 students.

“These pupils have out numbered the classrooms, so we agreed that the younger children should be taught outside the classes on the mats while those at the senior primary should remain in the classrooms.

“As you can see, even those tutored in the classes that lack roofs suffer from sun burns.

“We are forced to send children home once it starts raining. Even their teachers sit under the hot sun to carry out their duties and do their lesson notes while other learning materials are kept in my house.

“We have graduated several set of pupils who are also doing well in secondary schools.

“We cannot allow the situation to deter us as parents because formal education is very important, hence we tasked ourselves and also sought for donations to rehabilitate the school,” he said.

Danjuma disclosed that the community had raised N400, 000 for the rehabilitation of the primary school before the rainy season commenced fully, but said the amount was grossly inadequate to effect full repairs of the school.

He therefore called on the state and local goverments to come to their aid and provide them better structure with chairs, tables and learning materials.

“Our major concern is how to roof the classes before rainfall becomes consistent. We have received donation of N400,000 for the roofing but it will not be enough, we need goverment and other neccessary stakeholders to come to our aid,” he added.

Meanwhile, a parent in the community, Ibrahim Kufaina said apart from the primary school, the community also required additional secondary school as the only Junior Secondary school was inadequate to accommodate growing number of students.

“We have just the JSS Tafiyau at Panbeguwa ward. Students treck distances of between 2-4 kilometers to attend the school.

“The school needs repairs and it is filled beyond capacity. Children come from as far as Unguwan Madaki, Tudun Amawa, Unguwan Kakale and Unguwan Barde”.

NAN reports that other schools visited, though in better condition, lacked desks and chairs, toilets, water and learning materials.

The District Head of Kubau, the Sarkin Dajin Zazzau, Alhaji Shehu Umar, advised the goverment to involve traditional rulers while commencing community projects including, schools for proper monitoring and tracking of how funds were expended.

“In most situations, we only hear about the projects from people in the community. Some of these contractors execute substandard works which do not last.

“But If we are involved and co-opted in the SBMC programs, we will ensure they execute befitting buildings that will benefit us. After all, it is our community so we must ensure we get the best and also assign people to ensure its maintenance,” he said.

Umar assured that as leaders, they would continue to encourage parents to send their children to school no matter their socio-economic condition.

He said they also discouraged early marriage and hawking, especially amongst the girl child by enforcing children’s enrolment in schools.

“Though this goverment accords priority to education in the state, but more needs to be done as the demand for school enrolment is getting higher but the facilities are not enough or available to accommodate them.

“Hence, we insist that we should be notified of any ongoing projects in our community so as to safeguard it and ensure funds allocated to the projects are properly spent,” he said.

When contacted, the Permanent member, Kaduna State Universal Basic Education Board, Shehu Sani, said government was  aware of the situation of primary schools in the state and doing its best to fix them.

According to him,  at the inception of this administration in 2015, we met a terrible state of decay in the education sector hence the declaration of state of emergency in the sector by the governor.

He explained that goverment was doing its  best to tackle the situation but that, it had to be gradual due to financial constraints.

“Goverment commenced renovations and construction of schools across the state so as to improve the sector for the benefit of the masses.

“What is worrisome is that rainy season is approaching and the wind is destroying a lot of buildings. We are awaiting reports on when to continue work in schools.

“We therefore call on all communities to put more efforts to prevent the wind from destroying roofs of schools sited in their communities,” Sani said.

He explained that the Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency had been mandated to supply water and toilet facility needs of all public schools in the state.

Meanwhile, in 2018, the Resource Center For Human Rights and Civic Education (CHRICED) undertook a baseline survey to ascertain how UBE system was fairing with respect to its core mandate in Anchau, Kubau and Zaria LGAs of Kaduna State.

Ibrahim Zikirullah, CHRICED Director-General, said the survey was to also ascertain the level of community participation in tracking government activities to enhance accountability.

He explained that, despite the enactment of a legislation to ensure all children of school age in Nigeria acquired basic education, the UBE system continued  to fail millions of such children who ideally should be benefitting from a well run public education system aimed at molding them for roles as citizens.

“The situation is worrisome because the goal UBE is expected to achieve in banishing illietracy, tackling poverty and contributing to building citizens is almost defeated,”  Zikirullahi stressed.

He explained that the baseline survey was aimed at providing research based knowledge on the status of the UBE funded projects and to also uncover the usage of funds for the programme.

“The risks of corruption have to be removed because it will be a story of lost opportunity if monies meant for children’s education end up in private pockets.

“Also, for the security of the society and national development, it is imperative to understand the state of things as a prelude to tracking resources being expended on  UBE projects,” he said.

Zikirullahi said the survey by CHRICED would help citizens and communities understand thier rights and responsibilities with respect to how the UBE funds are expended as the future of millions of Nigerian children depended on the UBE system.

“The UBE system is very important due to the foundational role it played in preparing citizens become responsible with skills and competences to contribute to national development,” he said.

Defence/Security

Rep assures of improved welfare for military personnel

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Hon. Tajudeen Adefisoye, Deputy Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Army, has assured that his committee will give priority to the welfare of military personnel.

Adefisoye stated this when he paid a courtesy visit to the 32 Artillery Brigade of the Nigerian Army, Super Camp, in Okitipupa on Monday.

The lawmaker, representing Idanre/Ifedore Constituency, said that his committee would work tirelessly to ensure that soldiers were well catered for in the discharge of their duties.

He also promised to foster robust relationship between the military and the civilian populace in the country.

“I am most impressed with the functional facilities that are available in the Super Camp, particularly the helipad.

“The Brigade Commander, Brig.-Gen. Zakari Abubakar, also deserves commendation for the humanitarian services being rendered by the military to residents of the host communities.

“Provision of potable water, distribution of sports wears and computers to students in the Ondo South Senatorial District by the military are undoubtedly deserving of commendation,” he said.

The lawmaker also thanked Abubakar for doing a great job to curb crime and criminality in the state.

Adefisoye also commended the traditional rulers of the host communities for supporting community policing.

He lauded the leadership of the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, for making funds available to run the camp, thereby ensuring peace in the southern zone of the state.

Responding, the brigade commander said that the ongoing clearance activities of ‘Operation Crocodile Smile IV’ had been yielding the desired results in the state and across the country.

Abubakar urged the public, particularly the host communities, to take advantage of the hot lines provided by the Nigerian Army to provide useful information to attain success in clearance operation.

The commander later conducted Adefisoye round the camp and explained to him its strategic security importance.

Although Abubakar said that the camp was a military barrack, he, however, added that it also housed the police and other paramilitary agencies like DSS, Immigration, NDLEA and the NSCDC.

Edited by Ifeyinwa Okonkwo and ‘Wale Sadeeq

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LASG evacuates lion from private residence to Lekki Zoo

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 The Lagos State Task Force says it has successfully moved a lion found at a private home around Victoria Island to a zoo in Omu Resorts, Lekki.

The Chairman of the agency, CSP Olayinka Egbeyemi, said in a statement on Monday, that the exercise was carried out in conjunction with officials of the Lagos State Ministry of Agriculture and medical personnel from Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Ibadan.

Egbeyemi said that Dr Ogunmo Bamidele, who led the medical team from the University of Ibadan, had to tranquilised the lion thrice before evacuation.

He said that the agency responded to a petition from residents on the use of the lion as maiguard.

According to him, investigations revealed that the lion was brought in from Cameroun by an Indian national two years ago.

”Immediately I got the petition, I deployed my officers to the house at No. 229, Muri-Okunola Street, Victoria Island, Lagos, where they kept a close watch for more than 72 hours before the lion was finally removed today,” he said.

He assured residents that the owner of the lion would face the full wrath of the law, while warning residents to abstain from harbouring wild animals that endanger the lives of others.

”In as much as we appreciate residents around Victoria Island for their quick action, we urge every member of the public to be observant in their immediate environment.

”Residents should report any strange or unusual activity to appropriate government authority for prompt action,” Egbeyemi said.

The Director, Veterinary Services, Lagos State Ministry of Agriculture, Dr Macaulay Rasheed, advised members of the public to stop rearing wild animals in private homes to avoid unnecessary attack and contagious animal diseases.

Edited by Jane-Frances Oraka/Wale Ojetimi

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Woman bags 3 years imprisonment for stealing one-month-old baby

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An Ado-Ekiti Chief Magistrates’ Court, on Monday, sentenced a 39-year-old woman, Mercy Momoh, to three years imprisonment for stealing one-month-old baby.

The Chief Magistrate, Mr Adesoji Adegboye, found the convict, whose house address was not given, guilty of the charge of stealing.

The convict had pleaded guilty to the charge and begged for leniency by the court.

The Magistrate, who summarily tried and sentenced the convict to three years imprisonment, however, gave her an option of N100,000 fine.

Earlier, the police prosecutor, Sgt. Samson Osobu, had told the court that the convict committed the offence on Sept. 20 at the state government secretariat in Ado-Ekiti.

Osobu told the court that convict had stolen a month-old baby belonging to Funmilayo Dada.

According to him, the offence contravenes Section 371 of the Criminal Code, Laws of Ekiti State, 2012.

He told the court that the convict had seen the woman with her baby and tricked her with the story that the Ekiti State Empowerment Programme at the state secretariat was disbursing money to the less-privileged.

The prosecutor said that the convict had further tricked the woman to leave her baby and cell phone with her, while she sent her to help purchase call card.

Osobu said that when the woman came back, both the convict and her baby were nowhere to be found.

He added that the mother of the baby reported the matter at the police station and that through information, the convict was apprehended by the police and the baby given back to the mother.

Edited by Kevin Okunzuwa and ‘Wale Sadeeq

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Northern Governors Forum congratulate  Bayelsa, Kogi  governors – elect

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The Northern States Governors Forum, (NSGF), has the congratulated Bayelsa Governor-elect, Chief David Lyon and re-elected Kogi Gov. Yahaya Bello over their victories in the last Saturday’s elections.

The Chairman of the Forum and Plateau Governor, Simon Lalong also rejoiced with the All Progressives Congress (APC) over the victory of its two candidates in the elections.

Lalong, in a congratulatory message issued by his Director of Press and Public Affairs, Dr Simon Macham, described Lyon’s victory as a demonstration of the people’s confidence in his ability to perform.

The NSGF chairman said that Bayelsa people had no doubt in his ability of their governor-elect to deliver the change to the state in line with the vision of APC.

He said that the re-election of Bello was yet another sign of confidence reposed in him by the people of Kogi.

Lalong said that it was also an opportunity for the state government and the people to work harder in taking the state to the next level.

He assured the elected governors of the support of the Forum as they settle down to fulfill their campaign promises to the electorate.

/ DUA

edited by Emmanuel Nwoye/ Dada Ahmed

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Emir of Daura distributes relief items to 1,500 indigent persons

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The Emir of  Daura, Alhaji Farouk Umar has distributed relief materials to 1,500 indigent persons in the emirate to cushion their hardship.

The monarch made the presentstion at the Daurama palace in Daura on Monday.

He said the materials were donated by a philantropist, who did not want to be named, but entrusted the emir to share it to deserving families.

Nigeria News Agency reports that the items distributed included 1,000 each of matrasses, bags of beans, maize, salt, sugar, cartons of sphagehhtti, formade, noodles, blankets and packets of Lipton tea, as well as 2000 cartons of soap.

Other items are 2000 bundles of clothing materials, 1,000 jerrycan of cooking oil and other cooking ingredients.

Umar said indigent persons, including the blind, cripples, widows, orphans, lepers and some section of the media have been selected to benefit from the gesture.

The monarch added that 59 victims of the recent flood in the area and members of the NURTW were also selected to benefit.

He said the items would be distributed across the five local governments of Daura, Baure, Sandamu, Maiadu’a and Zango, which constitute Daura Emirate, and warned the beneficiaries against diversion of the materials.

“We have formed a formidable survellance committee that will report sharp practices to us for prompt action,” he added.

Malam Saminu Ahmed, who spoke on behalf of the beneficiaries, commended the donor for the gesture and prayed for long life to the emir for his just and fair leadership.

Edited by Maharazu Ahmed

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YPP faults Kogi election, YDP says conduct perfect

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The Kogi Chairman of Young Progressives Party (YPP), Mr Chinda Emmanuel has faulted the outcome of the governorship election in the state, saying it was marred by violence and did not reflect the true wishes of the electorate.

On the other hand, Dr Sani Teidi-Shaibu, gubernatorial candidate of Youth Democratic Party (YDP) said the election was one of the best he had ever witnessed.

Emmanuel disclosed this while addressing newsmen on Monday in Lokoja after announcement of the election rwon by incumbent governor, Yahaya Bello.

According to Emmanuel, the exercise fell short of all known rules of engagement as contained in the electoral rules and regulations and was, therefore, not happy with the outcome.

“I am not happy with the way the election went. In my own Local Government Area, I voted at unit 007 Gboloko and my supporters also voted there but I’m surprised that INEC recorded only two votes for my party in the results.”

He claimed that in Dekina, Ibaji and Lokoja Local Governments people were killed and helicopters allegedly used to carry ballot boxes.

“My party, YPP and our candidate, Hajia Aisha Audu are not happy with the outcome of the election and the result announced today. They announced a cooked result and we shall challenge it in court”, he said.

However, Teidi-Shaibu, the gubernatorial candidate of  YDP said the election was one of the best he had ever witnessed.

“I think this is one of the best elections I have ever witnessed because they at INEC did their homework and the election was very perfect.”

According to Teidi-Shaibu, there was no rigging in the election.

“Whoever is aggrieved should put it aside and let us team up and work with government so that Kogi can move forward”, he said.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that, in the result announced by INEC Monday in Lokoja, Bello of the APC won with 406,222 votes, while Engr Musa Wada of PDP got 189,704 votes to come second.

Edited /Maharazu Ahmed

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