Kwara public school students to get free notebooks

Pupils in Kwara State public schools in the 16 local government areas are to get free notebooks as part of the government’s efforts to deepen access to quality education and ease the burden on the parents, Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq has said.

Speaking with the state chapter of the Nigeria Union of Teachers  on  Wednesday, AbdulRazaq said the sum of N70m was released to the Ministry of Education and Human Capital Development to produce the notebooks and make them available to students in public schools free of charge.

A statement signed by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr Rafiu Ajakaye, said that the step will effectively end years of complaints of lack of writing materials by indigent pupils adding that this came a day after the education ministry conducted open bids for renovation of 31 public schools across Kwara State.

“I went to some schools where the students have no reading materials. That is why we set aside about N70 million to make sure that books get to the pupils and they will soon start distributing them,” AbdulRazaq said.

Responding to appeals by the NUT for the governor to look into issues affecting them, AbdulRazaq promised to look holistically into the welfare of the civil servants including teachers who he said are key to the future of the children.

The NUT Chairman in Kwara State, Mr Toyin Salihu, commended the Governor for his unique leadership of the state which he said has resulted in prompt and full payment of workers’ salary since he assumed office.

Salihu appealed to the governor to prioritise promotion of teachers in the state, adding that teachers who were promoted between 2015 and 2017 were only given promotion letters without financial backing.

He also pleaded with the governor to pay outstanding arrears of SUBEB teachers adding that apart from four months’ salary owed teachers in all basic schools, 1,302 teachers at the SUBEB were not paid their June 2016 salary after the staff verification exercise that cleared them.

The NUT chairman while lamenting that teachers in the state have not been treated fairly over the years by the previous administration said that “teachers have not been undergoing training for decades. We appreciate this administration for the commencement of training of teachers and pray that the exercise be sustained to enhance productivity.”

He then pledged their support for the government to realise its policy objectives in the education sector.
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