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14-Year-Old Girl From Akwa Ibom Wins UBA Essay Competition

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For the fourth consecutive year, the females have led this competition with a 14-year-old Eshiet Abasiekeme of Bright Stars Model Secondary School from Akwa-Ibom state winning this year’s United Bank for Africa (UBA) educational grant of N2.5 million. She will also be supported throughout her educational career and beyond with constant mentoring by the UBA Foundation.

Abasiekeme who had joined the virtual event from her base in Akwa Ibom state in Nigeria, could not contain her excitement as she heard the announcement that she had won the first prize of the NEC 2020.

“I feel honoured to be the winner of this year’s NEC, and I want to appreciate UBA and UBA Foundation as this will help towards my dream of becoming a lawyer,” she said proudly, expressing that she would like to go to university in Uyo in her home state.

The second prize was awarded to 14-year-old Mofuluwake Adesanya of Spring Forte-Lead College Lagos State, who won a N2,000,000 educational grant, whilst the third prize of N1,500,000 went to Abdulganiyy Habeeba, 16 years old. Abdulganiyy attends the International School, University of Lagos.

Eshiet and the 11 other finalists, took home their brand new laptop computers to enable them continue to work competitively in a world that is rapidly becoming fully digitalised.

Congratulating all the winners at the final event of the competition, the Managing Director/CEO of UBA Foundation, Bola Atta, applauded all the participants for their exceptional brilliance.

She explained that the Foundation had taken into consideration the effect that the Covid-19 pandemic has had on lives and incomes across board and had increased the prize money by 33 per cent this year to help cushion any negative or inflationary effects.

Emphasising the driving force behind the annual competition, she said, “We are passionate about the annual NEC because it changes lives and helps to improve the quality of lives of students and their families. The NEC helps to improve the quality of writing and competitiveness amongst students.

We have launched in more African countries this year and would have launched the initiative in 20 countries by the end of 2021. It is not just about writing essays, the ripple effect is really quite enormous, and we are glad that it is cascading to other countries where we operate.’ she said.

Also speaking at the opening of the event, the Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of UBA Plc, Kennedy Uzoka, commended all 12 finalists, expressing that UBA was happy to be touching lives and making a solid impact through its National Essay Competition, which is now in its 10th edition.

He was very pleased about the fact that more females again came out tops this year, adding that notwithstanding the constraints and challenges of 2020, the Foundation received the highest number of entries ever, at over 12,000 digital submissions’.

Mr Uzoka, who is also the Chairman, UBA Foundation, said, “The NEC has been changing lives positively for 10 years, and we have awarded scholarships to students not just in Nigeria but in other parts of Africa like Ghana, Sierra Leone and Senegal. Some of these students are already graduates and contributing meaningfully to their communities’.

“To all 12 of you that have emerged finalists, I would like to congratulate you. If out of 12,000 entries you were able to make it to the top 12, that represents about 0.12% of the entries. You are no doubt, already a winner,” he continued.

UBA Foundation’s National Essay Competition is an initiative under the Education pillar of the Foundation. Now in its tenth year, the aim of the NEC is to ensure that more African youths have access to education. The programme also highlights the good quality of education that exists on the continent as it stresses that the grant must be used in any university of the winners’ choice on the African continent.

2020 UBAF TOP 12 FINALISTS

S/N NAME POSITION
1 Eshiet Abasiekeme Eshiet 1st

2 Mofuluwake Adesanya 2nd

3 Abdulganiyu Habeeba 3rd

4 Emenugha Hannah Amarachi 4th

5 Ibem Marylyn Anya 5th

6 Ehibor Favour 6th

7 Nwabueze Regina Ugochi 6th

8 Dimaro Tamarapreye 7th

9 Ozoke Melvin Damian Uchenna 8th

10 Enobong Flourish David 9th

11 Chukwuma Light E. C. 10th

12 Stephen God’s Grant 11th

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ASUU Chairman Under Attack For Saying Private Universities Push Out Graduates With Empty Brains

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Chairman of ASUU for the University of Jos Chapter, Dr. Lazarus Maigoro has been under attack on social media for saying that private universities push out graduates with empty brains. 

Maigoro had tasked the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to ensure that private universities deliver quality and good academic standards in their operations.

He decried the low academic standards in most of the existing private universities in the country, urged the new ones licensed to live up to expectations.

“It is good to have private universities that have standard and quality, unfortunately, most of the existing ones are nothing to write home about. Most of the time, they push out people with empty brains as graduates; these graduates hardly contribute meaningfully to the growth ad development of society.

These graduates become a problem to the society rather than solving the existing problems as intellectuals. So, I want to urge the owners and managers of these newly approved universities to maintain the standard,” he said.

However, the ASUU boss has been called out on social media by some Nigerian youths. 

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Prof. Elom Appointed Vice-Chancellor, Alex Ekwueme Federal University

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Prof. Sunday Oge Elom has been named the third substantive Vice-Chancellor of the Alex Ekwueme Federal University, Ebonyi.

The Governing Council of the institution located at Ndufu-Alike approved the appointment.

Odisa Okeke, Registrar/Secretary of the Council, made the announcement on Tuesday.

Elom, a Medical Biochemist, will assume office on February 11.

He will take over from Prof Chinedum Nwajiuba, whose five years tenure will elapse on February 10.

Okeke said Elom’s selection was based on the recommendation of the joint Council Senate Selection Board in line with the university miscellaneous provision (Amendment) Act 2003.

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Education

BREAKING: NECO Releases Result

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The National Examinations Council (NECO) has released the internal Senior Secondary School Examination (SSCE) results with a two per cent increase of candidates who made five credits and above in all subjects.

The Registrar, Professor Godswill Obioma, announced these at the NECO Headquarters in Minna.

The Council also derecognised 12 schools for their involvement in mass cheating and whole school cases of malpractice.

He said the schools derecignised include four schools in Adamawa, two in kaduna, two in Kastina, Two in Niger, one in Taraba and one in FCT.

He said that 24 supervisors were blacklisted for various offences ranging from poor supervision, aiding and abetting, connivance with non candidates to write answers on chalkboards.

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