Kano State Government says it has earmarked N3. 2 billion for schools rehabilitation and construction of classrooms to ensure compliance with COVID-19 protocols when the schools resume.
Dr Danlami Hayo, Executive Secretary, Kano State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), made this known while speaking with newsmen on the sideline of a one-day orientation exercise for School Base Management Committees (SBMC), on Thursday in Kano.
The orientation was organised by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in collaboration with the Board to sensitise communities on schools reopening gidelines.
Hayo disclosed that the Gov. Abdullahi Ganduje had approved the amount to fast track school rehabilitation, construction of additional schools and classrooms as part of preparation to reopen schools in the state.
The added that the state government was not in a hurry to reopen schools without putting in place necessary facilities to protect pupils and teachers to stem further spread of the pandemic.
Danlami said: “The state government approved N3.2 billion for school rehabilitation, and why is it necessary to spend such huge amount of money?
“We know the population of Kano State and we know the pupils’ enrollment before the introduction of free and compulsory education programme is 1.5 million.
“After the implementation of the policy the enrollment increased to 3.5 million, and now there is outbreak of Coronavirus.
“The state government is spending to rehabilitate schools; we emphasised on construction of new classrooms and storey buildings in Kano metropolis where there is high population of pupils.
“Additional schools will be rehabilitated and new ones constructed in rural areas of the state.”
Hayo said that the state government had also expended over N100 million on procurement of hand sanitisers and other COVID-19 preventive kits for distribution to schools.
According him, the Board will train teachers on COVID-19 preventive tips to enable them protect themselves and their students to curb community transmission of the disease.
He added that the Board had also procured instructional materials and furniture for distribution to the schools while cars and motorcycles would be distributed to the teachers.
The Secretary reiterated government’s commitment to ensure prompt payment of salaries and improved welfare for teachers.
While commending UNICEF for organizing the orientation exercise, Hayo urged communities to protect school infrastructure and support government programmes to reinvigorate the education sector.
Also speaking, Tijjani Haladu-Baraya, the state Chairman of SBMC, said the exercise was important towards promoting community engagement in the preparations for the schools reopening processes.
Haladu-Baraya described the exercise as critical toward preventing spread of the virus when the schools reopened.
“The orientation exercise avail the SBMC opportunity to prepare and get ready in ensuring compliance with necessary COVID-19 protocols and the guidelines set out by the Federal Ministry of Education to facilitate safe reopening of schools.
“We want the pupils to be safe and their safety is the safety of the community because once a child is infected, he will transmit the virus to other members of the community,” he said.
Dr Ogu Enemeka and Muntaka Mukhtar, UNICEF resource persons, said the exercise was designed to disseminate guidelines for schools reopening and strengthen community engagement in ensuring safe reopening of the schools.
Enemeka called on the SBMC members to work towards encouraging participatory learning processes in their respective communities.
Mukhtar also enjoined the committees to work toward promoting good hygiene, sanitation and adherence to COVID-19 protocols to make the school environment safe.
Edited By: Maharazu Ahmed
Electorate, observer commend conduct of election in Edo
Electorate and observer at Ugboko Ward 5, Unit 26, Orhionmwon Local Government Area of Edo, agree that the conduct of the state governorship election is peaceful.
Some of the electorate who spoke with the News Agency of Nigeria in separate interviews on Saturday, said that the conduct was well organised.
Mr Benson Ibizugbe said that he was impressed that the process was going on peacefully and violence-free.
Ibizugbe said ”INEC did a good job by conducting a peaceful election here.
“There has not been issues of faulty equipment and they provided face masks for voters who don’t have to make them eligible to vote”.
An INEC observer, Ada Opkara, from Smile Africa, said that the voting process was seamless and commended the people of Ugboko ward for their peaceful conduct.
“I resumed here at 7: 18 a.m. before the INEC staff resumed activities, from that time till now, about three hours later, everywhere is calm.
She expressed optimism that the peaceful atmosphere at the polling unit would continue throughout the voting process going by the presence of security personnel.
Another electorate, Mr Monday Erhabor, said that he was happy that there was no violence at the voting centre.
“Everywhere is calm and peaceful, there is no violence, the security is tight and we are sure of a free and fair process”.
Edited By: Constance Athekame/Kayode Olaitan
Edo Election: European Centre decries non-compliance to COVID-19 protocols
Mr Wilson Manji, the deputy project coordinator, told the News Agency of Nigeria , that although the voters were all wearing face masks but they did not maintain social distancing.
“So far the election is going smoothly and calm. We are at Ologbosere primary in Ikpoba-Okha local government area of the state.
“So far everything is peaceful and calm here. Just that the INEC staff just arrived at about 10a.m. and accreditation and voting started at about 10.30a.m. instead of 8.30a.m,” he said.
According to him, the polling officers came with hand sanitisers and thermometers to check the temperature of every voter.
“But we are aware that there are some few isolated cases that started 9.a.m. or after 9.a.m. because of some issues they needed to sort out.
“From the reports we are getting, almost all the polling units have started voting,” he said.
Wariowei, however, said he observed that the voters were all wearing face masks but did not maintain social distancing.
According to Wariowei, before I left the polling units I visited, I educated the people on the need to adhere strictly to the COVID-19 regulations by maintaining social distancing for the safety of all.
Edited By: Abiemwense Moru/Donald Ugwu
Gov. Ganduje urges Muslims to pray for peace, stability
Gov. Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State has called on Muslims to continue to pray for peace and stability in Kano and the country at large.
Ganduje made the call at the closing of the Annual Zikir and Prayers for National Unity organised by the Majalisul Shura Litaraqa Al-Tijjaniyya at Kano Emir’s Palace.
Hassan Fagge, the Chief Press Secretary to the Deputy Governor, Alhaji Nasiru Gawuna, stated this in a statement in Kano on Saturday.
Represented by his Deputy, Alhaji Nasiru Gawuna, the governor said that it was only through prayers and total submission to Almighty Allah that the current challenges in the country can be addressed.
He said: “the Annual Zikr plays a vital role in bringing peace and stability as well as seeking Allah’s intervention in addressing problems facing the state and the nation.
“As we are all aware, there are a lot of issues bedevilling the country like the prevailing case of Corona Virus, but by God’s will, here in Kano, we have less record.
“Compared to other states, we have lower record, which can be attributed to the daily prayers and Zikr offered by the good people of Kano.
“Acquiring Islamic knowledge and putting it into practice is what the religion teaches; it also serves as solutions to some societal problems facing the Muslims,” Ganduje was quoted as saying.
He maintained that Tijjaniyya Followers were for long identified as the peace loving people, who sacrifice themselves in acquiring knowledge and promoting teaching of the Prophet and his companions as guided by Sheik Ahamadu Tijjani.
While acknowledging the contributions made by the leaders of Tijjaniyya movement towards islamic propagation in Africa and the world at large, Ganduje implored the followers to continue to pray for the state and love each other as Muslim brothers.
The governor further extended his best wishes to the organisers of the annual Zikir and assured them of his administration continue support and cooperation towards promoting Islam.
The Emir of Kano, Alhaji Aminu Ado-Bayero said the annual Zikir and Prayers was organised to draw closer all the Tijjaniyya Followers and pray for the Nation’s unity, stability and progress.
Bayero explained that the Annual Zikr reminds all the followers the good works of their leaders like Shehu Usman Danfodio, who spent their live towards propagating the movement not only in Africa but in the whole world.
He encouraged the members to seek for more knowledge to serve as ladder that would allow them to know the religion of Islam and the Tijjaniyya doctrine.
Earlier, the Acting Chairman of the movement, Khalifa Shehu Maihula, urged the members to follow the step and good life style of Sheik Ahmadu Tijjani, who devoted his time in propagating the teaching of Islam and love of the Prophet.
The Annual Zikr was attended by the Former Kano State Deputy Governor, Prof. Hafiz Abubakar, members of the Kano State executive council, senior government officials and some Islamic scholars.
Edited By: Constance Imasuen/Felix Ajide
Edo 2020: Card Readers fail to authenticate fingerprints in Esan West, Central
The Card Readers provided for the Edo Governorship election to authenticate fingerprints of voters in Esan West and Esan Central Local Government Areas of Edo on Saturday failed to recognise some voters.
Correspondents of the News Agency of Nigeria , who monitored the election in the areas, report that while the Card Readers easily identified the voter cards, they failed to authenticate their fingerprints.
This abnormally was noticeable at the polling units in Ward 5 (Uhunmudumu Primary School), and units 14, 15 and 16 (Emado Primary School) in Ekpoma, Esan West Local Government Area.
The same was applicable in units 5 and 6, Ward 6 (Idumebo Primary School), in Esan Central Local Government Area.
Meanwhile, Mr Victor Edoro, a politician in the area and an ex-commissioner in Edo, Mr Gideon Obhakhan, have described the exercise as impressive.
They described the voting process as peaceful and orderly, with compliance to COVID-19 Pandemic containment protocols.
Edoro, who voted at his voting centre in Idumebo Primary School, Irrua, Esan Central Local Government Area, described the voting process as “peaceful and hitch free.”
Edited By: Abiemwense Moru/Donald Ugwu