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House Of Rep Applauds Kwara For Judicious Use Of UBEC Grants



Kwara State again came up for national applause on Tuesday as the House of Representatives Ad-hoc Committee on Basic Education and Services commended the state for efficient use of basic education grants and the state government’s determination to improve standard of education.

The commendation came barely one month after UBEC itself said Kwara now stands out for excellent utilisation of the grants — a feat the body observed is a clear departure from its horrible experience with Kwara State in the past when the grants were diverted, resulting in official blacklist of the state for at least seven years (2013-2019).

The committee specifically applauded Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq for quality service delivery seen in the management of the Universal Basic Education Commission matching grants, saying the state deserves a pat on the back for the quality of the schools and other facilities funded from the money so far accessed.

“What we have seen so far in Kwara is of high quality and satisfactory. There is evidence of focus and commitment, and a clear interest in promoting basic education and empowering our children to survive in an increasingly complex technology driven global system,” chairman of the committee Prof. Julius Ihonvbere told reporters on Tuesday in Ilorin.

Flanked by other members of the ad-hoc committee, Ihonvbere was speaking as the committee wrapped its two-day oversight visit to Kwara State to inspect the completed and ongoing UBEC-SUBEB projects.

“I think the best way to appreciate what is going on is to have the proper understanding of how it used to be, and we’ve seen a lot in Kwara,” he added.

“It is not always that we find a leadership (like AbdulRazaq) that understands basic education and its value to national growth and development. If the basics – the foundation – is contaminated and corrupted, what it produces can never promote peace, stability, growth and development anywhere in the world, that is why basic education is very critical.”

Some of the schools the committee visited included Ogele LGEA Primary School, Ogele and Otte LGEA Primary School Otte-Oja (both in Asa Local Government area); Sheikh Alimi Junior Secondary School (Ilorin West); Amoyo Junior Secondary School (Ifelodun); Gaa-Akanbi Junior Secondary School (Ilorin South); Shao LGEA Primary School, Shao (Moro); and Adeta UBEC Model Smart School in Ilorin West local government of the State.

Ihonvbere said his committee members were just as impressed as he was about how the projects have been greatly executed in Kwara State, adding that the committee will officially communicate their judgement of the assessment to the Governor and other appropriate quarters as part of its oversight functions

“As an academic and the Chairman of this committee, and I am sure my members share the same sentiment, we are very pleased and happy with the programmes of Kwara State. There are states that have collected marching grants from UBEC and have not deployed them to basic education. A few (of the states) have jettisoned the action plans of UBEC; they are doing something else with the money. Some have done wishy-washy works. With time, this Committee will release a list of our observations in various states,” he said.

“Without education you cannot go anywhere. It is not rocket science. And I think Kwara State seems determined to change the narratives. We are pleased about it.”

He said no efforts will be spared to sanction the states found to have diverted the UBEC grants, including taking steps to retrieve some abandoned facilities the Commission allocated to some defaulting state governments.

“There are penalties for states where UBEC allocated critical infrastructure to some state governments but were abandoned. We are amending the UBEC Act so that UBEC can retrieve such facilities and put them to public use,” Ihonvbere added.

“Secondly, we are looking at ways to compel compliance with the law of the land; a situation whereby states that have not accessed the marching grant or have accessed it but used it wrongly will face some penalties.”

He also hinted that state governments that comply with UBEC’s action plans will be rewarded with more support to serve as an encouragement to do more.

“At the level of the committee, the National Assembly and the UBEC, states that utilized UBEC grants perfectly like Kwara will get additional support as a reward, so that it will encourage them to do more,” Ihonvbere added.

“I would like to advise state governments to take basic education seriously in their own interest. Bulletproof cars, dogs and barbed wire cannot save them from the anger of uneducated, abused and marginalised children in the consequences.”

He commended the management of the State Universal Basic Education Board and their Chairman, Prof Sheu Raheem Adaramaja for proper monitoring and their insistence on delivery of quality jobs by contractors.

Other members of the National Assembly Ad-hoc Committee on the oversight visit were: Hon. Mayowa Akinfolarin; Hon. Bashir Dawudu; Hon. Oluyemi Taiwo; Hon. Mufutau Egberongbe; Hon. Cook Ganiyu Olododo; Hon. Sylvester Ogbaga; Hon. Usman Abdullahi; Hon. Peter Owolasi; and Hon. Bukola Oyewo.

UBEC was represented during the tour by Dr. Jimmy Equensen and Engr. Yissa Yakubu.

Chairman Kwara SUBEB, Professor Sheu Raheem Adaramaja, said the school projects cover renovation, construction, and comprehensive remodelling of various structures across at least 605 public schools in the State, including provision of furniture, public toilets, and water facilities.

He said the turnaround of the education sector under Governor AbdulRazaq has led to increase in students’ enrolment, decrying how hundreds of classrooms were left dilapidated under the previous administrations.

“In terms of renovation, we have renovated 605 schools as contained in our action plan. The project consists of construction and comprehensive remodelling of classrooms, and provision of furniture for teachers and students,” Adaramaja said.

“The situation before was so pathetic that nobody wanted to put their children in public schools. But the story is different now. Enrolment of pupils into government owned schools has now increased.”

Adaramaja, who conducted the team round the places of their choice, described the Governor as the wisest leader for paying the #7.1billion UBEC counterpart fund to access another N7.1bn with which the government is now fixing public schools.

PTA Chairman for Amoyo Junior Secondary School, Prince Adeyemi Garba, appreciated the government for the work done and how the Amoyo community is given a sense of belonging.

“We have to thank the authorities for remembering Amoyo town. I have now discovered that not only does every child counts in the State’s education policy, but every community also counts, and we are grateful,” he added.

Chairman, School Based Management Committee (SBMC) for Shao LGEA school, Elder Adigun Abel, said the choice of Shao primary school for the UBEC’s renovation project was appropriate, given that the whole Shao has no other community school for basic classes.

Adigun lauded the vision of the government in turning around the education sector in Kwara and renovating school structures in their community.


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Imo State Labour Party Gubernatorial Aspirant Found Dead



Chief Humphrey Anumudu, a Labour Party aspirant in the upcoming Governorship primaries in Imo State, has been found dead in his house.

Fidel Info reports that The aspirant died in his house in Lagos after he had returned from an LP meeting at the party national headquarters in Abuja on Friday.

A native of Mbieri Ancient Kingdom in Mbaitoli Local Government Area of Imo state, Anumudu was reportedly found dead in his house in what family sources described as a “spiritual attack.”

As a multi-billionaire businessman cum politician, he has been contesting for the governorship seat of the state since 1998.

He was said to be the true winner of the Peoples Democratic Party governorship primary in the state in 1998 before the ticket was ceded to Achike Udenwa who went on to rule the state between 1999 and 2007.

Since then he had been contesting for the number one seat of the state. In 2019 he was the Zenith Labour party governorship candidate.

A close friend of the deceased said that he died around 5:30 pm on Friday.

The late politician had already paid the sum of 25 million Naira for Labour Party’s Governorship form for the November 11th 2023 Guber contest.

Chief Anumudu, a respected legal luminary and an astute politician was also the Chief Executive Officer of Globe Motors.

He contested for the Governorship election in the past under the All Progressives Grand Alliance.

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INEC Vows To Prosecute Perpetrators Of Violence In 2023 Elections



The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has promised to prosecute perpetrators of electoral violence in the just-concluded 2023 general elections.

Fidel Info reports that The Chief Press Secretary to the INEC Chairman, Rotimi Oyekanmi, stated this on Friday in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

Oyekanmi said the prosecution of electoral offenders and their sponsors will curb the prevalence of violence in the nation’s elections.

He also called for the need for the establishment of the Electoral Offences Commission and Tribunal to prosecute such offenders and their sponsors.

The INEC boss spokesman noted that if the new commission was established, electoral offenders and their sponsors would reconsider their actions.

Oyekanmi, however, said the Commission has succeeded in prosecuting a few electoral offenders, but their sponsors have been largely untouched.

He said, “Electoral violence should not be tolerated. That is why the commission has been calling for the establishment of the Electoral Offences Commission and Tribunal, specifically to try cases related to infractions associated with elections.

“In fact, stakeholders have also been calling for this tribunal for many years, especially after the 2011 general elections. I believe strongly that if perpetrators of electoral violence and their sponsors know that they will give account for their misdeeds, they will think twice.”

“The commission has succeeded in prosecuting a few electoral offenders, but their sponsors have been largely untouched. We need to change this.”

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JUST IN: CBN Orders Banks To Circulate Cash This Weekend



As part of a coordinated effort to facilitate the circulation of banknotes of various denominations, the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, has confirmed the evacuation of banknotes from its vaults to commercial banks throughout the nation.

Fidel Info reports that Also, the CBN has ordered all commercial banks to be open on Saturdays and Sundays. (more…)

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