Youths coalition, NGO, partner to increase access to quality education in Sokoto



A coalition of youth organisations in Sokoto State, has said it would collaborate with High Level Women Advocates (HiLWA), an NGO, to promote access to quality education for the girl-child.

Leader of the coalition, Mr Salman Yahaya-Maiyama, stated this in an interview with newsmen in Sokoto, on Friday.

Yahaya-Maiyama said HiLWA had supported youth groups in different areas to ensure maximum community involvement in accelerating development in the state.

He said no fewer than 120 youths had attended an education mobilisation training in the state, aimed at providing platforms for youths to interact and exchange ideas.

He said the participants, comprising of 70 women and 50 men, were mobilised to serve as community advocates for safe and quality education for every Nigerian child, with emphasis on girls.

“Youths constitute a large percentage of the Nigerian population, hence, they have a vital role to play and leverage on Sokoto State’s high budget allocation to the education sector.

“We commend the government for allocating 28 per cent of the 2019 budget to education, and appeal to stakeholders to ensure maximum support for the state in terms of legislation and policy implementation,” Yahaya-Maiyama said.

He commended HiLWA for its support to education across the state, noting that during the programme, HiLWA representatives delivered lectures on diverse topics.

“The topics comprised of gender equality and equity, positive masculinity, value of education, role of citizens and governance, as well as networking as a strategy to create awareness.

“I urge the media, community groups and civil society organisations to sustain the efforts at ensuring mass enrolment, retention and completion of students’ education.

“Various strategies were proffered to ensure increased enrollments at the grassroots; and every participating youth will serve as an advocate on spreading the message in their immediate communities,’’ he said.

The Nigeria News Agency , recalls that HiLWA with support from UNICEF, UkAid and the Federal Government, had organised youths’ capacity building conference in June, to commemorate the International Day of the African Child.


Youths stage peaceful protest over security challenges in Katsina State



Hundreds of youths in Katsina State, on Tuesday staged peaceful protest over the increasing rate of banditry, kidnappings and other security challenges in the state.

The protest was organised under the auspices of National Youths Council of Nigeria (NYCN) and Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG).

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the protest was monitored by the Commissioner of Police, Sanusi Buba,who also addressed the protestors.

The youths had planned to converge on the Katsina Emir’s Palace, but their plan was scuttled by security agents, who blocked all roads leading to the palace.

The protestors, however, passed through Kofar-Durbi to GRA carrying placards with different inscriptions like: “stop the bloodshed”, “do the needful before they finish us” and “banditry and kidnapping are our monsters” among others.

The security agents also blocked all roads leading to the Government House to prevent the youth from getting there.

The state Chairman of NYCN, Katsina State, Lukman Umar-Kankia, said that the state, which was known for peace, is now facing mounting security challenges, including banditry, kidnapping and cattle rustling, among others.

“Bandits operate with brazen impunity, their audacity is appalling. In broad daylight, they sack villages and annihilate the people.

“They rustle animals, raze markets and reduce houses to rubble; they defoliate farms and pillage resources.

“They rape women and abduct men and demand a ransom their relations couldn’t afford,” he said.

He therefore urged the Federal and state governments to intensify efforts in protecting peoples lives and property.

“The government should employ more police for the affected areas, proffer stiffer punishment for anyone found aiding bandits and kidnappers,” he said.

Addressing the youths, the police commissioner, assured them that the government and security agents were doing their best to overcome the security challenges in the state.

“We are aware that we have challenges, these challenges were built up over 30 years, yet some Nigerians want these problems that have been accumulated over 30 years to be solved within a period of months.

“We are determined more than ever before to ensure that these problems are solved, and that is why we have joint security operations to bring the situation under control,” he said.

Buba admonished the youths not to be misguided, and thanked them for conducting themselves in a matured manner.

“Thank God it is a peaceful protest, there was no any violence and when I talked to them, they listened.”

Edited By: Maharazu Ahmed (NAN)
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June 12: Youths should engage leaders on accountability – LEAD Network



An NGO, the Leadership, Entrepreneurship and Advocacy (LEAD) Network, has urged youths to engage leaders and hold them accountable as the nation marks 2020 Democracy Day on June 12.

The Executive Director of LEAD Network, Mr Chukwuma Okenwa, made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria   on Thursday in Enugu.

NAN reports that President Muhammadu Buhari, in 2019, recognised the outcome of June 12, 1993, Presidential Election and declared June 12 as national Democracy Day.

According to Okenwa, young Nigerians should live up to their responsibilities by getting involved in governance and by asking relevant developmental questions.

He said that youths must stand out as symbol of the future, radiating zeal, strength, innovation and vibrancy, especially on issues of governance and leadership.

He added that “youths are leading the way in new development and ideas everywhere in the world.

“Young Nigerians should be weary of the status quo tagged: `the Nigeria factor’, they should embrace only the dream of a Nigeria that they can be proud of.

“Democracy in Nigeria should not just be ‘of the people’, because the mandate is given to leaders by their people.

“Democracy should  be by the people and for the people, through youths’ active participation in governance and citizenship engagement.”

Okenwa also called on the legislature to stand its ground as the hallmark of democracy, while creating legal frameworks and laws that are people-centred and people-oriented.

He, therefore, urged lawmakers in the country to carry out their legislative businesses with due recourse to their constituents, “which are co-stakeholders in a democracy.

“There is the need for legislators to carry their constituents along while sponsoring or supporting bills so as to get their opinions.”

“This is because the legislators are there for their people and not for themselves.

“That makes a good case why young Nigerians should engage political office holders, especially their representatives”, he said.

Edited  by  Bola  Akingbehin/Hadiza Mohammed-Aliyu
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Ebonyi indigenes laud FG for establishing College of Education in Isu



People of Isu Okoma community of Ebonyi living in Enugu, have applauded the Federal Government for establishing  College of Education, Isu, in Onicha Local Government Area of Ebonyi State.

The community expressed its feeling in a statement issued by its leaders in diaspora after an emergency meeting held in Enugu on Friday.

The statement was signed by Chief Anthony Anoke, the leader of Isu Okoma in Diaspora, Enugu Chapter; Dr Ikechukwu Egbo and Mr Frank Omah.

“The entire people of Isu Okoma kingdom appreciate and thank President Muhammadu Buhari for his wisdom and decision in approving the establishment of the College in Ebonyi State,especially in Isu, Onicha Local Government.

“The community equally expressed its profound gratitude to the Federal Ministry of Education for letting justice, equity and fairness count in the selection of Isu as the host community of the new college.

“We also thank the  Ministers of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu; Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu and Gov. Dave Umahi, Sen. Michael Nnachi and Hon. Makwe Livinus, for making this project a reality.

“The community has made available, large expanse of land for immediate take-off and further assured the state and the Federal Government maximum cooperation.

We, Ebonyi citizens in general, are grateful that out of the five states in the South East, Ebonyi State was chosen to locate this new educational institution,’’ the community said.

They also criticised the petition in the red chamber of the National Assembly seeking to change the present location of the Federal College of Education, Isu.

The group maintained that the action of some individuals seeking relocation of the institution challenged the wisdom of the President.

“We urge the Nigerian Senate Committee on Ethics and Privileges to disregard the petition as it amounts to challenging the authority and wise decision of President Buhari, who, after due investigations and consultations, rightly approved Isu as the best site,’’ they added.

Edited By: Edwin Nwachukwu (NAN)

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UN declares Sept. 9 International Day to Protect Education from Attack



The United Nations General Assembly on Thursday proclaimed Sept. 9 as the International Day to Protect Education from Attack.

President of the Assembly, Amb. Tijani Muhammad-Bande, said in a statement that the proclamation came through Resolution 74/275 adopted by member states under the “silence procedure”.

In the resolution, the member states reaffirmed the right to education for all and the importance of ensuring safe and enabling learning environments in humanitarian emergencies.

They decried growing attacks on educational institutions, their students and staff, in contravention of international humanitarian law.

The resolution strongly condemned such attacks, which it said impede the “full realisation of the right to education, in particular of women and girls”.

It expressed concern about the use of schools for military purposes in contravention of applicable international law.

According to the resolution, military abuse of schools might also affect the safety of children and teachers and the right of the child to education

The document also conveyed the “deep concerns” of member states about “school-related violence against girls, including sexual violence and harassment on the way to and from, and at school”.

Such act “continues to deter girls’ education and, in many cases, the transition to and completion of secondary education”, it stated

The resolution said those risks might influence parents’ decision to allow girls to attend school.

It urged “all parties to armed conflict to fulfil their applicable obligations under international humanitarian law and international human rights law”.

These include respect for civilians, including students and educational personnel, and civilian objects such as educational institutions.

The document called for efforts to promote safe and protective school environments in humanitarian emergencies.

It urged all Member States, the UN and other international and regional organisations, civil society and all other stakeholders to observe the day.

It invited the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) and the UN Children’s Fund(UNICEF) to facilitate observance of the day

The cost of all activities that may arise from the implementation of the resolution should be met from voluntary contributions, the resolution stressed.

Edited By: Sadiya Hamza (NAN)
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