The UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has joined world leaders and Goodwill Ambassadors in a global call to rescue the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and get back on track to building a better world that “leaves no one behind”.
The 2022 SDG Moment, which places an annual spotlight on the 17 Global Goals agreed by countries in December 2015, took place on Monday in New York. “The world has a long ‘to do’ list”, Guterres told world leaders, asking for more finance and investment from the public and private sectors, to meet growing needs.
Acknowledging the current “moment of great peril” for our world – characterised by conflicts, climate catastrophe, division, unemployment, massive displacement and other challenges, Guterres said that although “it was tempting” to put long-term priorities to the side, development could not wait.
“The education of our children cannot wait.
Dignified jobs cannot wait.
Full equality for women and girls cannot wait.
“Comprehensive healthcare, meaningful climate action, biodiversity protection – these cannot be left for tomorrow,” he underscored, highlighting that across all these areas, young people and future generations are demanding action.
“We cannot let them down.
This is a definitive moment… The perils we face are no match for a world united…Let’s get our world back on track”, the UN chief urged world leaders.
Similarly, the President of the General Assembly, Csaba Kőrösi, echoed.
Guterres’s words, and said that it was timely and more necessary than ever to “re-dedicate ourselves to the SDGs” as the world falls behind.
“The pandemic was a postcard from the future, a bleak future of interlocking global crises.
One that we want to avoid and that we can avoid.
We must now regain the speed lost to the pandemic and to our inaction.
Solutions are at hand,” he said.
Kőrösi added that it is time to “get serious” about saving the world, with all pleasant and unpleasant consequences that this entails, and asked UN Member States to deliver on promises made.
Holding a placard of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals at the podium, Prime Minister of Barbados and UN Environment Champion of the Earth, Mia Motley, reminded the General Assembly what each of the SDGs meant, from ending poverty and achieving gender equality, to protecting our planet.
“A world that is driven by a climate crisis cannot provide a sustainable future for us.
Are we so arrogant to believe that there will be no failed societies and no extinct species, as history shows us otherwise?
,” she asked world leaders.
She urged the children of the world to “lead a revolution” in changing our habits to end plastic pollution and waste, and “hold the leaders’ feet to the fire” to make the world a better place to live in.
Poet, activist and UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) supporter, Amanda Gorman, shared one of her inspiring pieces focused on leaders’ accountability, ending poverty and protecting the Earth.
Meanwhile, SDG Advocates and K-pop superstars BLACKPINK, appeared in a video message inviting the world to take specific actions to tackle climate change and boost sustainable development.
President Muhammadu Buhari has pledged that Nigeria will do its best to reach all learners, wherever they are, with quality, inclusive learning and skills development opportunities to prepare them for the bright future they deserve.
Buhari made the pledge on Monday while making a statement on Thematic Session four: Digital Transformation of Education at a 3-day Transforming Education Summit in New York. The Transforming Education Summit is organised on the margins of the 77th session of UN General Assembly.
According to the Nigerian President, over 50 per cent of Nigeria’s 200 million plus population is made up of people below the age of 20 and this youthful population has developed a tremendous appetite and savviness for everything digital.
“The emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic brought transformations that led to the adoption of Digital Learning options.
“Nigeria leveraged the long closure of schools during COVID-19 and the continual disruption of schools due to insecurity and climate change to expand digital learning, and ensure continuity of learning.
“This enabled government to specifically target out-of-school children, and children in difficult-to-reach areas with digital learning opportunities.
’’ Buhari said that the progress achieved in digital learning had been guided by the development of the national digital learning policy, which focuses on the long-term vision of inclusive digital transformation by increasing public provisioning for digital learning.
He said it also guides the development and rollout of free, open-source digital tools to provide large-scale remote learning with online contents that are complemented by television and radio programmes as well as print materials for home use.
“Through the Nigeria Learning Passport, a digital learning platform launched by the Federal Ministry of Education in partnership with UNICEF, teachers and learners have online and mobile access to almost 15,000 curriculum-mapped educational content that has been reviewed and vetted by a 35-member strong review team.
“Equity is at the heart of this agenda, with content and lessons produced in English and in local languages.
“The contents are also gender-inclusive and customized to the needs of learners, including those with functional difficulties,’’ the President said.
In addition, Buhari said in order to support children and adolescents who are on the wrong side of the digital divide, Nigeria had prioritised the accelerated development of the offline version of Learning Passport.
“This will be available for integration with teaching and learning in the 202223 academic session.
“The Federal Ministry of Education, together with UNICEF, is also partnering with private sector telecom companies to bring connectivity to the hardest-to-reach schools and communities,’’ he said.
He, however, thanked the partners in supporting the digital transformation of the education sector.
“We join you in celebrating the announcement of the Global Partnership which will support us in our efforts to leverage digital technology to close equity gaps in education.
“I also appreciate the work done by the United Nations, and other partners, that have made this possible.
We are indeed excited to be a champion country,’’ Buhari said.
Nigeria has called on global community for collaborative partnerships that build a framework of ideas and enable it position learners at the core of its national efforts to transform schooling.
President Muhammadu Buhari made the call on Monday while delivering Nigeria statement at Transforming Education Summit (Leaders Roundtable) organised on the margins of the 77th session of UN General Assembly.
Buhari said: “In transforming education, we must not erect borders.
Where they exist, we must bring them down, as we have much to learn from each other.
“As we are aware, improving equitable and inclusive access to quality educational opportunities is germane to ensuring the full development of our societies.
“No country can develop beyond the capacity of its educational system.
” The Nigerian President said it would be difficult to have a meaningful conversation around transforming the national education systems without transforming the teaching profession.
Accordingly, he said Nigeria called for more deliberations on efforts to expand innovations and research on teacher education and the professional development of teachers.
“The process of building a sustainable teacher supply chain to address the challenges of teacher shortages is important, and calls for global action.
“Nigeria also wishes to reiterate the need for all Member States and stakeholders to address the systemic and structural issues that hamper access to quality education.
“It is only when we do this, that we can create a world truly fit for all, and where no one is left behind.
’’ According to him, utilising information technology as a teaching tool holds the promise of transforming and erasing the boundaries of learning and re-engineering how learning occurs within and outside the classroom.
Buhari expressed optimism that bridging the digital divide would offer Nigeria opportunities to expand learning and transform the education system, even as we build an ecosystem of knowledge, and a truly resilient society.
“Nigeria is restoring trust with its people, in order to provide safe learning environment and responsive services.
That was why we were among the first to endorse the Safe Schools Declaration (SSD), while developing a national policy on school safety and security.
“Nigeria also hosted the 4th International Conference on Safe Schools Declaration in partnership with the African Union, Norway, Spain, Argentina and Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack (GCPEA) in 2021,’’ he said.
He said the implementation of the SSD had offered an avenue to address school safety in a broader context that now includes gender-based violence and the protection of girls from hazards that contribute to insecurity and violence.
“While this is a step forward for promoting the wellbeing of girls and ensuring they stay in school and learn, there are still many more grounds to cover.
” In addition, Buhari said Nigeria had also demonstrated its commitment towards strengthening learning outcomes and accelerating skills development by implementing cash transfer programs.
He said that the Nigerian Government had also dedicated special statutory funds to Universal Basic Education and special programmes, prioritising the scaling-up of play-based early childhood education, as well as foundational literacy and numeracy programmes.
“I am pleased to announce Nigeria’s participation in the Programme for the Analysis of Education System (PASEC 2024), as a complement to the ongoing efforts towards the institutionalization of national and school-based assessment.
Doing so requires significant investment in schools and teacher training.
“This informed Nigeria’s launching of a New National Teaching Policy to address the career path, remuneration, and general welfare of our teachers.
“We are now prioritizing the full implementation of professional teaching standards and teacher qualification framework while improving their recruitment, deployment and management,’’ he said.
The President further said that Nigeria in July 2021, joined the Global Partnership for Education Heads of State Call to Action to increase domestic education expenditure towards the 20 per cent global benchmark by 2025. Accordingly, an allocation of N742 billion (1.7 billion USD) was made in 2021, and we will continue this in the coming years through coordinated action in partnership with the private sector and all our development partners.
“We will empower schools with the resources to truly transform teaching and learning, as we understand that efforts to improve the quality of education provision and learning outcomes are underpinned by the understanding that learners, teachers, and school leaders are the key stakeholders in education reforms.
’’ Buhari, however, appreciated the Secretary-General for convening the Transforming Education Summit, which is aimed at mobilising action, ambition, solutions and solidarity to transform education.
It was also convened to take stock of efforts to recover pandemic-related learning losses; to re-imagine education systems for the world of today and tomorrow; and to revitalise national and global efforts to achieve SDG-4 on quality education.
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A Federal High Court, Abuja has ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to allow the Labour Party (LP) submit the name of its candidate, Clarita Ogar, for the 2023 Cross River House of Representatives election.
Justice Donatus Okorowo, in a judgement, held that the Electoral Act, 2022 is superior to INEC guidelines on elections.
Justice Okorowo stated further that Section 31 of the Electoral Act, 2022 allows parties to still submit names of candidates that emerge from substitution primaries not later than 90 days to the election.
He said that the electoral umpire, by its own manuals, cannot limit the time provided for by the Electoral Act.The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Ogar emerged the LP candidate for the 2023 Federal Constituency poll in Cross Rivers.
However, the party could not meet up with the INEC’s guidelines for the submission of Ogar’s name as its candidate for the constituency.
NAN reports that the commission had given July 15 for the submission of list of candidates for the presidential and National Assembly elections and Aug. 12 for candidates for governorship and state’s House of Assemblies polls But the party, in an originating summons marked: 132522 had sued INEC as sole respondent in the suit.
In the matter filed by its lawyer, Monday Mawah, LP, Comrade Abayomi Arabambi and Ogar Mpeh Clarita are 1st to 3rd applicants respectively.
The applicants had prayed the court to make an order directing INEC to allow the party (1st apolicant) submit the name of Ogar (3rd applicant) for the Federal Constituency election in the state electronically or manually.
They urged the court to declare that by virtue of Section 31 of the Electoral Act, 2022, INEC had no power to reject the name of its candidate.
In the affidavit in support of the motion deposed to by Comrade Abayomi Arabambi, the party’s National Publicity Secretary, he averred that Ogar emerged as candidate for the constituency in the substitution primary held on July 14 in Cross River “That the 3rd applicant is a member of the 1st applicant that emerged from a congress held and monitored by the officers of the respondent in Cross River State on the 14th of July, 2022. “That I was informed by my solicitor, Monday Mawah that by the new Electoral Act, political parties are to change their candidates upon death or withdrawal of any of the candidates.
“That the party concern is to write notice of such withdrawal to the respondent.
“That the 1st applicant did write notice of the withdrawal to the respondent.
photocopy of the withdrawal notice dated on the 8th day of July, 2022 is herewith attached and marked as Exhibit “B.
” “That the new Electoral Act allows party affected to submit the lists of such candidate (s) to the respondent not later than 90 days before the date appointed for the election.
“That I know as a fact that the election is still well over 90 days from today.
“That while we were trying to submit or enter the name of the 3rd applicant in the site of the respondent, the entire system of the respondent crashed and as a result, we could not submit the name of 3rd applicant.
“That attempt to submit same proved abortive,” Arabambi said
President Muhammadu Buhari has lauded the recent successful operation of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) leading to the smashing of an international drug syndicate and recovery of 1,855kg of cocaine.
Mr Femi Adesina, the President’s spokesman, said in a statement on Monday in Abuja that the president made his feelings known when he originated a telephone call to Chairman of the NDLEA, retired Brig. Gen. Buba Marwa, from New York. The president is currently in New York, United States, where he is attending the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA 77), Buhari said that the news of the recovery gladdens his heart.
He said: ”I deeply appreciate the work that you have put into the eradication of the drug menace.
”It gladdens my heart as I continue to follow the successes achieved under your leadership.
“You have demonstrated over and again that choosing you to lead this fight against wicked merchants of death whose sole aim is to endanger and truncate the future of our youth is a very good choice.
”Please keep up the good work.
” Adesina quoted the Nigerian leader at a meeting later with members of his delegation as saying: “Buba Marwa is doing well.
Two tonnes of cocaine, that’s a haul.
” The NDLEA had announced the “highest cocaine seizure” worth over 278 million dollars and arrest of drug barons including a foreigner in a major operation lasting two days across different locations in Lagos.