1,068 Anambra primary schools get agriculture, sports equipment
By Franz Ndulue
The headquarters of the Anambra State Universal Education Board (ASUBEB), Awka, was a beehive of activities as agricultural implements and sports equipment were distributed to all the 1,068 public primary schools in the state.
Speaking at the commissioning and distribution ceremony of the multi-million-naira facilities, the Executive Chairman of UBEC/ASUBEB, Chief Patrick Ugbaja, disclosed that the initiative was aimed at making agricultural science more practical oriented at basic education level, provide them requisite skills to stimulate self-employment, dignity of labour and self-esteem and equip the youngsters with basic functional entrepreneurship knowledge and life skills.
Ugbaja said sports was also seen as a vital instrument for a healthy living and all-round development of a child, hence, UBEC/ASUBEB provided the sports kits to all public primary institutions in the state, just as he thanked Governor Willie Obiano (Akpokuedike Global) for his administration’s sports development efforts.
The ASUBEB boss recalled that footballs were earlier distributed to all the schools, attributing the windfall to the governor’s “prompt payment of counterpart fund to UBEC which enable ASUBEB access and provide all these,” describing Gov Obiano as education-friendly and teachers’ advocate.
Deafening ovation followed the announcement by Chief Ugbaja that the governor had already approved the promotion of 1,007 tutorial and non-tutorial staff of the commission for 2019, out of whom 645 had been elevated to salary grade level 16 (GL.16) for which they would forever remain appreciative.
Also expressing gratitude to the Commissioner for Basic Education, Prof. Kate Azuka Omenugha, for her relentless support and guidance as well as the permanent members, hardworking directors and staff of the board for making the event a resounding success.
Earlier in a welcome address by the ASUBEB’S Director of Academic Services, Lady Stella Ezepue, stated that, “agriculture is the first industry and its importance cannot be over-emphasized and that was the reason the UBEC introduced the school to farm Agricultural Education Training Programme (AETP),” as agriculture offered veritable tool for acquainting learners with requisite skills to stimulate self-reliance.
Ezepue lauded Gov Obaino’s magnanimity in providing the necessary counterpart fund which enabled the state primary schools to benefit from the AETP, while also commending Commissioner for Basic Education, Prof. Omenugha, as well as ASUBEB Executive Chairman, Chief Ugbaja, for ensuring that both teachers and pupils in public primary institutions in the state benefited from the school to farm scheme.
Thanking UBEC for its intervention with the sports and agricultural facilities throughout the federation, Ezepue further advised education secretaries in all the 21 LGAs of the state to monitor effective usage of the agricultural implements and sports equipment for full realization of the set objectives.
Major highlight of the occasion was the distribution of the items to the heads of all primary schools by Chief Ugbaja, while prominent dignitaries present included Ozo Uche Ezeani (Director of Planning, Research and Statistics), Obi Ogochukwu (Director Q/A), Ngozi Enendu (Director SOMO), Nebechi Okoli (Director Admin), as well as Sir Emeka M-P Anetoh and Lady Chuka Enumah, among others.