By Amina Yahaya
The Yobe State Governor, Mai Mala Buni, has stated that in the aftermath of Boko Haram and its devastation in the State, Yobe State Government has identified 400,000 out-of-school children for which his administration has initiated reforms that has made the State the second highest in terms of budgetary allocation to the education sector.
The Governor stated this on Tuesday in Kano during a retreat for new Yobe commissioners-designate that took place at Porto Golf Hotel in Bompai, Kano.
Governor Buni, who identified education as the root for effective socioeconomic development declared that it is important to make education a number one priority in the State.
“A society that gets its education right would always get its socio-economic development on the right path. This is true across the globe. This is why we strongly believe that it is important that we make education our number one priority in the State”.
“As our first order of business, therefore, we began taking the steps necessary to revitalize our education sector and provide the best possible opportunities for our people to have access to qualitative education”, he stated.
“It would interest you to note that the expert Technical Committee for the Revitalization of Basic and Secondary Education has also identified well over 400,000 out-of- school children in the State. I strongly believe that this is an issue that requires urgent attention through the integration of the Tsangaya/Qur’anic school system with the formal education system in the State”.
“We are mindful of the fact that to fully recover from the devastating effects of the Boko Haram insurgency, we need an all-hands-on deck approach to development where the Federal Government, development partners and our State Government pool resources together to help our people recover and rebuild their livelihoods”.
“A recent survey also found that Yobe has the second highest allocation for education in the 2020 budget among all States of the federation. That shows that our development strategy is being recognised”.
“We organised and hosted an education summit – the first of its kind in the State, set up an expert technical committee on the revitalization of basic and secondary education and moved to ensure that only qualified teachers stand in front of the classroom to teach our children”.
“I am glad to inform you that we have already began to implement the recommendations of the Interim Report submitted by the Committee”.
As part of this, I have approved the establishment of a teacher training and curriculum development center.
“I have also approved the establishment of three Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education schools, one in each of our three senatorial districts”, he stated.
Still on the issue of the devastation of Boko Haram as it affects the people, the government has also initiated plans to enhance skills in the youths to make them self dependent.
“The State Government has also demonstrated its commitment to empowerment and human capital development through the training that it is currently providing in paint production to over 500 youths across the State”.
“We are demonstrating – with that training – that we are not just going to provide the proverbial fish to our youth. More importantly, we are going to teach them how to fish – so that they could have as much fish as they are ready to work for”, he stated.
He also mentioned other packages of development that his administration is initiating for the State on infrastructure.
“We have also begun the construction of an Ultra-Modern Market in Damaturu at the cost of N2.8 billion and set in motion the construction of a modern Trailer Transit Park in Potiskum in partnership with the Nigerian Shippers Council. When completed, the park is projected to provide up to 5,000 jobs for the people”.
“We have also commenced the construction of township roads and drainages in Bun-Yadi, Damagum, Babbangida and Jajimaji towns to make commuting in these towns easier for the people and guard against flooding”, he stated.