By Moses Adeniyi
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu has said the impacts of no less than over 1,449 infrastructural projects executed in 1,036 schools across the State have begun to reflect evidently in the performance of public school students.
The Governor who spoke on Thursday at the closing ceremony/dinner of the 61st Independence anniversary of the President’s National Inter-Basic School Debate Championship held at the State Capital, Ikeja, said his Administration embarked on the projects having been convinced that teaching and learning can only take place effectively in a conducive atmosphere.
He mentioned that reflections have begun to take effect by assessments of positive results recorded in recent external examinations, national and international competitions, where students from the State have been recording excellent performance.
“In Lagos State, the brilliant performance of our pupils and students in Quiz and Debate competitions at the State National and International levels is the result of the direct impact of the investment of this Administration in schools infrastructure, capacity building and need specific recruitment of teachers.
“So far, our government has delivered over 1,449 school infrastructural projects, covering 1,036 Schools across the State. Our Government ensured prompt construction and rehabilitation of dilapidated public schools, while 96,334 dual composite units of furniture were supplied to Primary and Secondary Schools across the State.
“As an inclusive government, we are committed to ensure that high quality education is accessible to all learners irrespective of their locations through effective and efficient management of resources for the attainment of self- reliance and socio-economic development.
“This government is convinced that teaching and learning can only take place effectively in a conducive atmosphere, thus, our commitment to the provision of new structures and the rehabilitation of existing ones.
“I am glad to inform you that the intervention of this administration in our schools has been yielding positive results.
“We measure the success of our policies and programmes by the improved students’ performance outcomes in the results of examinations, national and international competitions, improved morals, etiquette, and confidence in public speaking,” Governor Sanwo-Olu who was represented by the State’s Commissioner for Education, Mrs. Folasade Adefisayo said.
He implored students in the State to continue working harder and excel both in academic and their curricular activities.
“The Federal Government and all State Governments have put a lot of facilities at your disposal and you have to effectively use them to your advantage,” he said.
Acknowledging the role of teachers in mentoring, he said “you are indeed nation builders and we salute your commitment, diligence and dedication.”
This is just as Kwara State has emerged as the winner of the 61st Independence Anniversary President’s National Inter-basic School Debate Championship held in Lagos.
The event witnessed by top government officials saw four states competing for the first and second runner-up.
While Kwara and Katsina states competed for the first and second positions, Imo and Lagos states competed for the third and fourth positions.
The first runner-up spoke for and against introduction of single treasury account while the second runner-up spoke for and against sporting activities for girls at early stage of their education.
At the end of the competition, Kwara state emerged as the winner of the competition while Katsina, Lagos and Imo states were awarded with the second, third and fourth positions respectively.
Following its victory, Kwara state which was given a trophy would represent Nigeria in the next international competition.
Governor Sanwo-Olu who expressed excitement by the report of performance of the debaters from the preliminaries stages to the final stage, commended the organisers of the annual competition, describing it as a laudable “initiative poised towards uniting all students across the Federation and giving them an avenue to constructively contribute their quota, have a voice in deliberating a way forward for our great Nation.”
According to him, the competition has enhanced improvement in the public speaking and confidence building of students on yearly basis, while encouraging them to read wider and broaden their horizon.
“The President’s National Inter-Basic School Debate introduced by the Federal Government as part of well-structured plans to produce socially stable and self – reliant students who can easily integrate into the larger society is no doubt serving its purpose.
“It gladdens my heart to notice great improvement in the public speaking and confidence building of students on yearly basis. There is no gainsaying that this debate has become more competitive; it has encouraged students across the Federation to read wider and broaden their horizon.
“The use of English has developed tremendously, topics are well researched into and the ease with which salient points are marshaled makes the quality of argument and presentation of points very impressive, convincing and highly interesting,” he said.