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VP’s wife calls for greater investment in girl-child education



VP’s wife, state governors’ wives harp on girl-child education

… As Cleric admonishes leaders to show humility in service***

Wife of the Vice President, Dolapo Osinbajo, has stressed the need for greater investment in girl child education.

Mrs Osinbajo gave the advice in her address at the two-day Mallpai Foundation 2021 Literacy Day with the theme: “Promoting Literacy for better education in Nigeria” on Sunday night in Abuja.

She decried the situation whereby the girl child appears to lag behind the boys, saying more needs to be done to bridge gaps in education of female children and their male counterparts.

Osinbajo said, “When a girl is educated she can read and she can write, when she is educated she is aware of law.

“She knows love when her signs say danger, when a girl is educated she is aware of her potential. She can read about Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala of the World Trade Organisation.

“An educated girl sitting on a chair in Kebbi or Kano, in Osogbo or Oshodi, in Awka or Uyo, understands norms and expands her mind.

“She is not a doctor, but knows a bit about medicine because she can read. She is not an engineer but she knows a bit about buildings and how machines work.

“An educated girl achieves her potential and relives all of us, when we limit her in any little way, imagine if Dr Stella Adedunmi, a doctor was never educated, and imagine if Nana Asamoah, a poet, was never educated.”

Also read: Osinbajo cautions wealthier countries against defunding gas projects

She commended Mallpai Foundation efforts to provide meaningful life to the girl child to be apt, in achieving the desired goals, urging that more be done to ensure education is assured for the girl child.

During panel discussion, Mrs Madalitso Kambauwa, Deputy Minister of Education in Malawi, traced the problem of inadequacy in educating the girl child to primordial culture and tradition in Africa.

According to her, there is emphasis on the need for women and girl child education not just in Africa, but the world at large.

“Historically, the place for a woman was in the kitchen, it was not really a place for a girl to be in school excels in academics, therefore, girls have lagged behind.

“We are here because we want to correct that disparity; we are not looking down on our males.

“We even need them as champions of the girls, if we leave this to women alone, we are not going to achieve targets,” Kambauwa said.

On his part, the Minister of State for Education in Nigeria, Mr Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, decried misconception about education as just limited to classroom, to contribute to the lingering gaps

Nwajiuba said, “Education is not just a classroom thing, the entire gamut of the educational system consists of so many life skills that are inherently endowed in any society.

“However, the formal mode of teaching people to become literate in a communicable language, because literacy is not only as it pertains to English language.

“You can also have literacy in other languages; literacy refers to the ability to communicate in education in one language and to do so in written and oral forms.”

Meanwhile, Prof. Sulaiman Khalid, Executive-Chairman of Kebbi State Universal Basic Education Board (UBEB) said that out of 554, 000 pupils in Primary schools, 55 per cent are boys and 45 per cent girls.

“There has been massive improvement, in the past there used to be four children in school and only one actually is a girl, so the ratio had consistently been 3 to 1.

“The statistic itself marked certain peculiarities, in the urban centres it is 50-50, the girls are competing favourably with the boys,” Khalid said.

In her remarks, the Founder of Mallpai, Hajiya Aisha Atiku-Bagudu, said that education does not mean going to school alone, but starts from the home.

She expressed gratitude to the guests and partners at the event, and promised to leave no stone unturned in pursuit of the desired goals of promoting education in the country.

“We are always quick to blame lack of adequate educational infrastructure, but we do not develop the people that need to use such facilities.

“One of the problems we face is we wait for the government, we cannot move forward, if everything has to start with the government and end with it.

“Education does not mean going to school alone, it starts from the home; we need to train ourselves for we to be able to train every other child that we meet. She said,

The event was attended by people from all walks of life and featured panel discussion on policies centered on reshaping the education of the girl child.

MALLPAI means Mass Literacy for the Less Privileged and Almajiri Initiative.

In another development, Archbishop Christian Ekong, Archbishop and President, the Lutheran Church of Nigeria (LCN), on Sunday admonished Nigerians and leaders to always show humility in serving the people.

Ekong said this at the 2021 Diocesan Convention of the church with the theme: “Called by Christ to bear fruit, growing in humble service” in Abuja.

The archbishop said that the keys to achieving greatness were humility and selfless service.

“If anyone desires to be great, first, he shall be the last and servant, not just the last but servant of all.

“He who wants to be first must become the last, the first shall be the last, great things are in the way of service,” he said.

The cleric, who reiterated that great things were in selflessness and humility, said that they were principles bequeathed to humanity by Jesus.

“Jesus still tells us that if you want to be great, you have to be the last, you have to be servant of all.

“It is a principle which Jesus himself introduced, it is the principle of live and Jesus attained greatness through his sacrifice for us,” he said.

Bishop Good luck Essien, Bishop of the Lutheran Church of Nigeria (LCN), Abuja Diocese, described humility and service as the first sign of God’s people.

“Humility is the first sign of God’s people, whether we are Christians or Muslims, because we have to show humility.

“God himself showed it to us and we are his children and we have to live up to his expectation,” he added.

Essien, who emphasised the imperative of humility and selfless service, said that it was paramount in leading a peaceful and progressive life.

“If we follow the humility of Jesus Christ, I believe things will work well in our different settings,” the bishop said.

The cleric, however, urged those in leadership to subject themselves to the control of God for administrative excellence.

“Our government should learn to be under God because if they allowed God to lead them, things would work well,” he added.


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Security: Agbekoya Deploys 4,000 Security Personnel for S/West Farmers



…Says ‘We have decimated cases of kidnapping and clashes in our towns and farms

The Agbekoya Society of Nigeria, a Yoruba farmers and hunters association, says it has about 4,000 personnel providing security for farmers in the Southwest.

The Aare (President-General) of Agbekoya worldwide, Chief Kamorudeen Okikiola, disclosed this at a news conference to unveil activities for the 85th Anniversary celebration of the society in Lagos on Wednesday.

The Southwest governors, the Oni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, and other Yoruba leaders and farmers, will attend the anniversary scheduled to hold on Nov. 26.

“Today, Agbekoya is still leading as the biggest farmers’ association in Nigeria since 1938 and we will continue to provide security for our farmers.

“Agbekoya has done a lot for farmers and this has helped in feeding the nation. We have tried our best to eradicate anything that can make our farmers run away from farms.

*Chief Kamorudeen Okikiola, the Aare Agbekoya Worldwide (3rd Left) and other leaders of the society at a news conference on Wednesday in Lagos.

“Security in farms is relatively good now. We have done a lot in protecting farmers and their farms. We have put up several measures to ensure security for farmers,” he said.

Okikiola said being an association comprising farmers and hunters, it had its executive council and security wing in all towns in Yoruba land.

The Aare added: “We have decimated cases of kidnapping and clashes in our towns and farms. If you see any, they are very few.

“This is because our security arm swing into action in case of any hitch anywhere. We have about 4000 security personnel for farmers’ protection in southwest alone.”

According to him, the situation that forced many people to vacate farms for city because of insecurity has been decimated.

Okikiola said that Agbekoya had been very useful to conventional security outfits like Police to undertake certain difficult jobs that required going into forests to track down criminals.

“We don’t run away from creation of God. We are ready to challenge any battle that want to confront farmers in the southwest,” he said.

On the society’s achievements, Okikiola said that his leadership had grown Agbekoya membership from 49 members to 4.3 million members.

Commending a former minister of agriculture, Dr Akinwunmi Adesina for his efforts toward rebuilding the agbekoya society, Okikiola said the now President, the African Development Bank, believed in the society to achieve agricultural goals.

According to him, the society has not also relented efforts in training, educating and empowering farmers in partnership with local and foreign agencies and institutions as well as governments.

On the anniversary, Okikiola said the Ooni of Ife would be the Royal Father of the Day; the Olowu of Kuta, Oba Hameed Oyelude (Tegbosun III) Chairman and Chief Folashade Tinubu-Ojo, the Iyaloja General of Nigeria, as Mother of the Day.

He added that Aare Onikoyi of Yorubaland, Otunba Tomori Williams, would be the Chief Launcher with Iyalaje of Oodua, Princess Toyin Kolade among other eminent Yoruba leaders and farmers in attendance.

Okikiola said  the society would be celebrating  85 years of agricultural excellence and his 25 years as its  President-General.

“Since our inception in 1938, Agbekoya society of Nigeria, has stood as a guardian of agricultural interests, ensuring security and prosperity of our farming community.

“The 85th-anniversary celebration is a testament to our enduring commitment to the welfare of farmers and the sustainable development of agriculture,” he said.

Highlighting activities for the event, he said there would be a grand opening ceremony, exhibition/showcase of the evolution of agricultural practices and cutting-edge technologies.

He said there would also be a cultural extravaganza to explore the rich cultural heritage of the  agricultural community as well as performances, displays, and presentations.

Okikiola said pioneers of Agbekoya would be honoured to pay tribute to the visionaries and leaders who played pivotal roles in the success and growth of the society over the past 85 years.

According to him, there will also be an interactive forum which will engage stakeholders in discussions on the future of agriculture, sustainable practices, and the role of security in ensuring a thriving farming community.

He said the anniversary would reinforce the collective strength of agricultural sustainability for the good of the nation.

Okikiola said the society was dedicated to fostering a secure environment for farmers and ensuring the prosperity of agriculture through vigilant protection and advocacy.

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NNPP Heads To Supreme Court Over Appeal Court’s Sacking Of Kano Governor 



NAGAFF @23: Our Mission is Liberation of Industry Operators- Aniebonam

The New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) says it plans to appeal the judgment of the Court of Appeal which upturned the victory of Gov. Kabir Yusuf of Kano State at the Supreme Court.

Alhaji Abba Ali, the NNPP acting National Chairman, said this at a news conference on Saturday in Abuja.

Ali said that the judgment was a miscarriage of justice saying that Yusuf was given a popular mandate by the people of Kano State.

He said the party had already briefed its lawyers on the issue.

“Believing in the credibility of the judiciary and its ability to correct any error of judgment by the lower court, our party approached the Court of Appeal and prayed the appellate court to set aside the unjust ruling of the lower court.

“To our greatest shock and consternation, the Court of Appeal on Friday, Nov. 17 delivered a convoluted judgment that was anchored around their erroneous belief that Yusuf was not a member of the NNPP,” he said.

NAGAFF @23: Our Mission is Liberation of Industry Operators- Aniebonam
The NNPP Founder, Dr. Boniface Aniebonam

Ali said that to claim that Yusuf was not a member of the NNPP at the time of the 2023 general election, was mischief.
He wondered how Yusuf could have been successfully nominated on the INEC portal if his name was not submitted with the NNPP membership card.

“For our party, and we are sure for INEC as well, the issue of membership of candidates is a non-issue since the system of nomination is designed by INEC in such a way that only registered members can be nominated and uploaded onto the portal.

“It is therefore unbelievable that the Appeal Court would refuse to look at the merit of our party’s appeal and cling to the erroneous issue of membership that has already been settled severally by both the Appeal and Supreme Courts.

“We are therefore informing all members of the NNPP and indeed all Nigerians that our party has already briefed our lawyers to appeal this injustice at the Supreme Court.

“We believe that the Supreme Court will correct the errors of the tribunal and the Appeal Court and restore the mandate of the good people of Kano State by re-affirming Alhaji Yusuf as the duly elected Governor of Kano State,” he said.

Ali called on the judiciary to live up to its calling as the temple of justice and the last hope of the common man.


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Benue In N359bn Debt – Gov. Alia



Gov. Hyacinth Alia of Benue on Sunday disclosed that his administration inherited the sum of N359 billion as debt from the past administration in the state.

Alia disclosed this at an interdenominational church service to commemorate Nigeria’s 63rd independence anniversary.

The church service was organised by the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Benue State Chapter, at the Methodist Cathedral, South Bank, Makurdi.

The governor,  who is a Catholic priest, said that in spite of the debt burden, he was determined to reposition the state by providing an enabling environment for businesses to thrive.

“God has accomplished his work,  and it is now left for us to make our state and nation to work. I am here to make things work.

“What we inherited was nothing to be proud of, but we will do what will make us all proud. I inherited over N359bn debt,” he said.

*Gov. Hyacinth Alia

He regretted that the state lost billions of Naira worth of agricultural produce and other property to herders’ attacks on farmers.

He said that the farmers must be supported to do their job well.

Alia said that the condition of rural dwellers following incessant herders’ attacks and fuel subsidy removal had become worrisome.

He said that his administration would find ways to support farmers by providing seedlings, fertilisers and other forms of support to enable them to work effectively in the coming farming season.

“My colleagues call me the governor of the richest state in Nigeria and I agree with them because we have numerous mineral deposits, we have the best yams and soya beans, among others.

“We will create billionaires in the state through our farms. We have everything it takes to do it.”

Alia ordered an immediate end to illegal mining in the state.

“The foreigners illegally mining gold in Kwande, Logo, Konshisha LGAs and other places in the state should desist from it immediately. This is an order,” he said.

He said that God blessed the state and the entire Nigeria abundantly and it was left for the leaders to make things work.

He decried the spate of kidnapping and other criminal activities in the state, pledging to tackle them.

The governor said that the future of the state lay in the hands of the youth, adding that his administration was training 10,000 youths in information technology for improved digital knowledge.

Alia gave the assurance that his administration would not accommodate corruption and nepotism.

The governor appealed to Benue’s sons and daughters to support the state in any way they could.

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