KTSG seeks traditional rulers’ support to sustain GEP-3 project

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Katsina State Government has called on traditional rulers to redouble their efforts in supporting the sustainability of the ongoing Girls’ Education Project Phase 3 (GEP-3) in the state.

The Executive Chairman (EC) of the State’s Universal Basic Education (SUBEB), Alhaji Badamasi Daura, made the call at a meeting with traditional rulers on Monday in Katsina.

Daura, represented by a Permanent Member of the board, Alhaji Ashiru Sani-Batsari, said the meeting was a follow-up to the community accountability on sustaining the project.

The GEP-3 project was initiated by the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) as part of support to Nigeria, to tackle out-of-school children, especially the girl child.

It was also aimed to ensure an increase in the enrollment, retention, transition and completion of primary to secondary schools by the female children, especially in the northern part of the country.

According to him, the traditional rulers are closer to the people, therefore the need to involve them in the struggle to achieve the sustainability of the project.

He explained that UNICEF had a stipulated time to end its intervention in this area, therefore, government was making efforts to see its sustainance even without them.

The EC added that, “The traditional rulers are closer to the people, anyone they talk to on the enrollment of the female children in school will listen to them.

“Therefore, we are collaborating with them to ensure that all our children go back to school to the completion level and also have skills, especially our female children.”

He explained that with UNICEF intervention, the state had seen a lot of improvements, especially in the areas of enrollment, retention, transition and completion of school.

The Emir of Katsina, Alhaji Abdulmuminu Kabir-Usman, represented by a Councilor in the emirate, Alhaji Saidu Abe, reiterated the council’s commitment to support any programme aimed at improving the education sector in the state.

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He added that the emirate council had sensitised its district and village heads to the importance of education, saying that they were also doing their best in the area of girl-child education.

The Emir of Daura, Alhaji Faruk Umar-Faruk, represented by the Bebejin Daura, Alhaji Abba Yahaya, called on government to make available more funds for the projects.

Earlier, the lead facilitator for the meeting, Alhaji Kabir Ruma, had revealed that about 535 public primary schools, and 200 Integrated Qur’anic schools were benefiting from the intervention.

According to him, since May, 2012, UNICEF has been implementing the 8-year GEP-3 project, aimed at contributing to improved social and economic opportunity for girls in Northern Nigeria.

“But the GEP-3 project is funded by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO),” he disclosed. (NAN)

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