The Bayelsa State government yesterday expressed delight for consistently making it to the top five among the 36 states at the annual West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) in the last four years.
It said that the results were due to its commitment to education in the state and vowed to sustain and improve on the “massive gains” already made in the sector. The State Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mr. Jonathan Obuebite , who spoke in Yenagoa, pointed out that the development had placed the state as one of the most consistent in all external examinations since 2013.
He recalled that Governor Seriake Dickson in 2012 had declared a state of emergency in the sector, stressing that the subsequent follow up programmes was a major turning point for the state.
According to the Bayelsa government, the improvement had become even more notable taking into account “the massive decay of infrastructure and the disadvantaged position of the state”. Obuebite said that over 500 infrastructure were either developed or renovated across the state, coupled with an increase in public primary and secondary school intake, because of the free and compulsory education policy initiated in 2012.
“A serious minded government that means well for the people of the State, the government has followed up its initial policies by also introducing new all-boarding secondary schools, including the iconic Ijaw National Academy, Kaiama and the others, spread across the 8 local government council areas in the State,” he stated.
He said the new boarding schools had raised the bar for education in the state and were seen as special centres of excellence, “in view of the state-of-the-art facilities and massive infrastructure”, as well as the quality of academic staff on hand.
“The focus of the government is to move Bayelsa State and the Ijaw Nation to the very top of Nigeria’s educational chart, as well as position future generations of our people to be as competent and competitive with their contemporaries in other parts of the world.
“We can no longer play second fiddle to anybody or group of people in any part of the globe and the right way to pursue this agenda is to create the enabling environment for the present generation of Bayelsans and the Ijaws,” the government said.