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Report: UBEC boss misled Nigerians on number of out-of-school children

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Vice-President Osinbajo with school children in Calabar, Cross River State. UBEC’s figure of out-of-school children debunked

Vice-President Osinbajo with school children in Calabar, Cross River State. UBEC’s figure of out-of-school children debunked

How many out-of-school children does Nigeria really have? Are they 13.2million? An investigation by a Nigerian news platform has debunked the figure as incorrect and misleading.

The incorrect figure was given by the Executive Secretary, Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC), Ahmed Boboyi at a presentation made on his behalf by Bello Kaigara, the Director of Social Mobilisation of the agency on 4 October, at the Northern Nigerian Traditional Rulers Conference on Out-of-School Children held in Abuja.

According to the widely circulated report, Boboyi hinged the figure on the yet to be published Nigeria Demographic Health Survey (NDHS), which, he claimed, was conducted in 2015 by the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) and the Nigerian government.

He claimed that Nigeria out-of-school population has risen from 10.5 million to 13.2 million, according to the survey.

However, fact-checking by icirnigeria.org showed that the figure was false and that there was no NDHS conducted by UNICEF in 2015.

Geoffrey Njoku, a Communication Specialist with UNICEF Nigeria, said there is nothing like ‘NDHS 2015’. He said the organisation never conducted any survey of such, icirnigeria.org, reported.

“The last report on NDHS was that of 2013 and the next edition of the report should be published this year”, Njoku said.

The NDHS is a national sample survey that provides up-to-date information on demographic characteristics of the respondents and conducted at an interval of five years.

According to the last report, UNICEF was not actively involved in compiling the report. The role UNICEF played was only to provide technical support on height and weight measurement of women and children.

Doune Porter, former Chief of Communications, UNICEF Nigeria, told Africa Check that the figure of 10.5 million came from UNESCO’s Institute for Statistics database, using data from 2010. The Institute for Statistics is the official data agency of the United Nation’s Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), providing internationally-comparable data on education.

UNESCO said the 2010 figure on enrolment statistics originated from Nigeria’s education ministry. The age distribution was then estimated using data from a 2011 survey by the National Bureau of Statistics.

However, in 2014, the data agency revised the 2010 out-of-school figure for Nigeria from 10.5 million to 8.7 million. This was because the UN population division had produced new population estimates for that year.

Dr Yemi Kale, director-general of the National Bureau of Statistics said the Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS5), 2016/2017 conducted by the NBS and UNICEF was published in early 2018.

The survey shows that a total of 9.1 million children are out-of-school in Nigeria, a figure which is even higher than the figure quoted in the UIS 2016 report. In the NBS survey report, the out-of-school children are defined as the number of out-of-school children of primary school age who are not attending school and those attending preschool.

This differs from the UN definition which excludes the children attending preschool. By reviewing the figures to reflect the UN definition, this means that 7.2 million children of primary school age are out-of-school in Nigeria. Even though the figure is smaller than the UIS official report, it is higher than all other countries in the world.

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Education

Muslim parents speak on banning of 55 Hijab-wearing female students in LAUTECH school

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Muslim School Children

Muslim School Children

Parents of female Muslim students who were barred from entering the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH) International School have condemned the development.

DAILY POST gathered that no fewer than 55 female Muslim students who wore Hijab to the school were barred from entering the school premises on Monday.

But, the parents who said that they have waited for several years to ensure that their children were allow to use Hijab in the school, urged the management of the school to expedite action on the matter.

They urged the school authority to consider the issue as an emergency situation which should be treated with required expediency.

The parents under the auspices of LAUTECH Staff School and LAUTECH International College, Ogbomoso, Muslim Parents’ Forum, expressed their grievances on the failure of the school management to address them early enough.

The parents in a communique made available to DAILY POST after a peace meeting held with stakeholders of LAUTECH Staff School (LSS) and LAUTECH International college (LICO), Ogbomoso, argued that “the school process is a continuum and nothing should retard the ongoing efforts of the Committee that has been put in place to address the issue of Hijab”.

In attendance at the meeting were: Chairman Governing Board (LAUTECH International College, Ogbomoso), Chairman Governing Board (LAUTECH Staff School), Chairman Ogbomoso Parapo, Chairman PTA LAUTECH Staff School, Chairman PTA LAUTECH International College Ogbomoso, Chairman LAUTECH Security Committee, DSS Ogbomoso North Local Government, Principal LAUTECH International College Ogbomoso, Headmistress LAUTECH Staff School, Representative of the LAUTECH Public Relation Unit and resentatives of Muslim Parents.

The concerned parents in the communique signed by the duo of Mr. Ismaheel Adigun and Mr. AbdulRahman Elegbede, Chairman and Secretary respectively, said that the process relating to the use of Hijab by willing female Muslim pupils of LAUTECH Staff School and LAUTECH International College should be concluded in earnest.

The statement reads, “Sequel to the peaceful meeting held on Monday 14th January, 2019 at LAUTECH International College, Ogbomoso (LICO) premises with the key stakeholders about the use of Hijab by the willing female Muslim pupils, the followings were the key highlights of the resolutions at the meeting.

“That the process for the consideration of the use of Hijab has dragged too long since 2011; That the parents strongly express dissatisfaction on the unruly behavior and arrant use of vulgar language by some teachers against the Muslim parents.

“The Muslim parents expressed their grievances on the failure of the School management to address the Muslim parents early enough while attack is coming from teachers.

“That it was observed that there was a communication gap between the management of the schools and the Muslim parents on the ongoing efforts of the School in respect of the use of the Hijab by willing female Muslim pupils.

“That a committee had already been put in place by the Governing Board to look at the issue of the School uniform as it relates to Hijab among other things. An appeal was made to Muslim parents to allow the ongoing process of the Committee be concluded.

“The management should consider the issue as an emergency situation and should be treated with the required expediency. That the school process is a continuum and nothing should retard the ongoing efforts of the Committee that has been put in place to address the issue of Hijab.

“We humbly appeal that the process relating to the use of Hijab by willing female Muslim Pupils of LAUTECH Staff School and LAUTECH International College be concluded in earnest”.

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Delta University sacks two lecturers, others in trouble over alleged gross misconduct, sundry offences

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Angered by what it described as sundry offences and alleged gross misconduct by some of the lecturers, the management of the Delta State University (DELSU) has dismissed two of its lecturers in the Department of Economics, and sent a professor in the same department on compulsory retirement.

Three other lecturers of the Department of Agricultural Economics, Extension are also in trouble over alleged sex-for-marks, a demand the university management said can never be accepted or allowed to thrive in the institution.

In a statement signed by the Vice Chancellor of the university, Professor Victor Peretemode, a copy of which was made available to DAILY POST in Asaba, said the three lecturers are stagnated for three years while the professor would be retired from the university system next week.

The names of the affected lecturers were withheld in the release, but the Vice Chancellor said the decision to ensure the affected lecturers are dealt with accordingly, was reached at the 106th meeting of the Governing Council of the university after the Senior Staff Disciplinary Committee (SSDC) which carried out an investigation on acts of misconduct levelled against the lecturers, submitted its findings and recommendations to the Governing Council.

It was gathered that following the decision of the university management to lay off the affected lecturers, especially the three affected lecturers stagnated for three years, there is palpable tension and fear of the unknown in the university community as alleged efforts by them to get the State governor, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa to intervene, had been unsuccessful.

A staff of the university, who spoke to newsmen on condition of anonymity, said, “the affected lecturers, many of them are in the department of Animal and Environmental Biology, While another senior lecturer whose name did not appear with others, was warned for negligence of duty and told to strictly abide by the rules and regulations of the university as they relate to the conduct of the examination. All the information was also published in the school bulletin, there is serious tension and lobby to come back at all costs”.

Professor Peretemode disclosed that no fewer than 10 lecturers and non academic staff have been sacked in the last few months for gross misconduct and sundry offences, stressing that the university’s management has zero tolerance for offences committed by any staff .

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Nigeria’s private universities jump to 79

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Private universities in Nigeria are now 79, with the Federal Executive Council (FEC) approval of four more.

The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, said Wednesday that the four new universities have satisfied the criteria for establishing a university in Nigeria as provided by the National Universities Commission (NUC).

They are Greenfield University, Kaduna; Dominion University, Ibadan Oyo State; Trinity University, Ogun State and Westland University in Iwo, Osun State.

Nigeria now has 164 universities, comprising 40 federal universities, 45 state-owned universities, and 79 private universities.

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