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Kwara okays use of hijab in public schools

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The Kwara State Government has approved the use of hijab by female students in all public secondary schools in the state, thus ending a week of controversy and protest over the issue.

The state government also directed the reopening of all mission schools closed schools over the issue, with effect from March 8, 2021.

The following is a statement issued on Thursday by the state government and signed by the Secretary to the Kwara State Government, Prof Mamma Sabah Jibril:

Sequel to recent developments in our state over the status of the hijaab in public/grant-aided schools, the state government has consulted widely with thought leaders and leaders of both Muslim and Christian communities with a view to clarifying issues and reaching a consensus. The last of such meetings was held on Wednesday February 24, presided by His Excellency Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq.

At least 10 schools of interest were earlier shut down to maintain peace and public order as well as prevent mischief makers from taking undue advantage of the development.

The state government has considered submissions of all major interest groups on the matter. It has also thoroughly considered the education law of Kwara State, the prevailing court judgments and current global trends of multiculturalism in evolving a consultation-based decision that will bring lasting peace and understanding to our communities. The government has also paid particular attention to the ‘declaratory’ nature of the subsisting judgments of the Court of Appeal and their purports.

Consequently, the government hereby acknowledges and approves the right of the Muslim schoolgirl to wear the hijab, and directs the Ministry of Education and Human Capital Development to come up with a uniform hijab for all public/ grant-aided schools, which will be the accepted mode of head covering in schools. Any willing schoolgirl with the approved (uniform) hijab shall have the right to wear same in public/grant-aided schools.

 Also, the government affirms the right of every child in public schools to freedom of worship.

The government hereby directs that the affected 10 schools should reopen to commence classes on Monday 8th March 2021.

Similarly, the government has carefully noted submissions regarding ownership of grant-aided schools and related issues. While the status of these schools is the subject of judicial determination, this and other related matters will soon be subjected to a technical committee to advise accordingly. The government reassures all members of the public that it will act in good conscience at all times.

The government asserts that there is no victor or vanquished on the hijaab question. It urges the two faith communities, especially the leaders, opinion moulders and media personalities to act with restraint and great responsibility in their public utterances and actions, and continue to live in peace and harmony with one another. The government commends all the thought and religious leaders on both sides for their forbearance, understanding and commitment to peace.

Prof Mamma Sabah Jibril

Secretary to the Kwara State Government

February 25, 2021.

Education

JAMB extends UTME, DE registration by two weeks

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The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board has extended the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination and the Direct Entry registration by two weeks.
The board also extended the dates for the mock exam preceding the UTME and exam proper, indicating that the examination date had been shifted from June 19 to July 3.
JAMB’S Registrar, Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, announced the extension at a press conference on Saturday in Abuja.
He said the decision was the outcome of a two-day stakeholders’ meeting the board had in Abuja.
He said the stakeholders recommended that the two-week extension to accommodate candidates who had not been able to register as a result of some challenges associated with the National Identification Number and others.
He said a total of 1,134,424 candidates had so far registered for the exam.
Oloyede had ahead of the stakeholders’ meeting hinted about the extension, noting that although 50 per cent of candidates had already registered without problem, there was a need to carry everyone along.
He had said, “The possibility of shifting the exam forward is still high; but that will be determined after our meeting with stakeholders.
“This is because about 600,000 candidates who have indicated interest in the exam are yet to register. There is a need to give everyone the opportunity.”
He apologised for the new initiatives introduced in the 2021 UTME, saying that it was not to punish candidates but to expose candidates in the habit of indulging in various forms of malpractices.
He added that candidates were expected to provide two pictures on the candidate slip, picture of the person who registered at the JAMB office, and a picture of the owner of the name who registered with NIN.
Oloyede said the candidates should take note of the process, stressing that the essence was to detect any disparity in the process.

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Education

JAMB may shift UTME date – Registrar

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The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) says it may shift the date for the 2021 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME).
The Registrar of the board, Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, said this during a virtual meeting with 2021 UTME Committee members that over 600,000 candidates who indicated interest in sitting for the exams, were yet to register.
he exam is scheduled for between June 5 and June 19.
He said the candidates were finding it difficult to register due to the challenges of National Identification Number (NIN).
He said so far, 1.1 million candidates have registered for the 2021 UTME, stating that the board anticipated approximately 1.9 million registrations at the end of the exercise.
The JAMB boss noted that though 50 per cent of candidates have already registered without problem, there is need to carry everyone along.
He said, “The possibility of shifting the exam forward is still high; but that will be determined after our meeting with stakeholders.
”This is because about 600,000 candidates who have indicated interest in the exam are yet to register. There is a need to give everyone the opportunity.”

Oloyede apologised for the new initiatives introduced in the 2021 UTME, saying that it was not to punish candidates but to expose candidates in the habit of indulging in various forms of malpractices.
He added that candidates were expected to provide two pictures on the candidate slip, picture of the person who registered at the JAMB office, and a picture of the owner of the name who registered with NIN.
Oloyede said the candidates should take note of the process, stressing that the essence was to detect any disparity in the process.

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Education

Sanwo-Olu inaugurates classrooms in 20 LGAs

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Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos, on Friday in Lagos, said education remained the most veritable tool for wealth creation.

Sanwo-Olu said this while inaugurating 14 classrooms at the UBE Primary School and Community Junior Academy, Odo-Ayandolu, Ikorodu Local Government Area (LGA) of the state.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that a block of six classrooms was rehabilitated in the primary school and another block of eight classrooms in the secondary school respectively.

Sanwo-Olu, who was represented by his Special Adviser on Works and Infrastructure, Mrs Aramide Adeyoye, said the huge investment in infrastructure and current technological trends had put students and pupils in the state’s public schools in the lead of academic excellence in Lagos and Nigeria.

He noted that the performance of students had improved in local, national, and international examinations and competitions, as well as in morals, etiquette and confidence in public speaking.

“Education is still the most potent tool of empowerment and one of the most tested ways to close the gap between poverty and wealth,” he said.

The governor added that public schools in the state had consistently emerged the overall best at the international Robotics Competitions, since 2015 and had continually represented Nigeria.

He listed various local, national, and international competitions where pupils and students from Lagos public schools had retained leading positions, as confirmation of the improvement in the quality and standard of education.

Sanwo-Olu then commended the hardwork and commitment of the competent teachers who in addition to infrastructure, gave the success stories.

He also commended the Ministry of Education, the Universal Basic Education Board, and other agencies of the state, for their support toward the actualisation of the vision of the government for the education sector.

Sanwo-Olu advised children to continue to study hard to justify the government’s investment in their education while assuring parents of continued quality education delivery.

He said the projects would further improve the learning and teaching environment in public schools.

According to him, the projects will further drive the “Education and Technology” pillar of the state’s THEMES Agenda of his administration.

He said the government had begun an aggressive education infrastructure regeneration and renewal, with modern equipment and security across the state and had inaugurated projects in 20 LGAs.

“We have so far completed over 1,097 projects covering 970 schools across the state.

“In the last two years, our government has ensured the prompt construction and rehabilitation of 322 dilapidated public schools, while 87,000 dual composite units of furniture were supplied to primary and secondary schools across the state,” he said.

Mr Felix Adeyemi, who represented the Commissioner for Education, Mrs Folashade Adefisayo, in his welcome address, lauded the state government for its investment in modern education.

According to her, the governor has also touched virtually all the value chains of education in the state.

Mr Moshood Adeyemi, Principal of the Community Junior Academy, Odo-Ayandolu, commended the state government but appealed for a perimeter fence to make the environment safer.

Also speaking, Mrs Kehinde Adeleka, Headmistress of the primary section, requested additional classrooms to cater to the growth of the population of the school.

Compassion David, a Junior Secondary (JS3) student, also thanked the government for what he described as “a superb performance” in renovating the schools.

Clement Samuel, a pupil of the renovated primary school, prayed for God’s blessings on the governor and his entire team.

Oba Ganiu Asunmo, the traditional ruler of the area, who was represented by High Chief Onabanjo Olisa, also lauded the state government for the intervention.

He, however, appealed for more of such interventions in other schools in the area with infrastructure that was already overstretched.

 

 

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