Gloria Ogbu

In a bid to arrest the increasing rate of out of school students in Ekiti, a non-governmental organization based in the United States of America, Build a School Initiative in Africa (BASIA), has donated a building facility to a school, Saint Stephen’s Primary school hosting pupils displaced by terrorists in the state.
According to report, the pupils of Itake Primary School, Itake community in Ayebode Ekiti, Ajoni Local Council Development Area of Ekiti State, were last year displaced from the town following attacks by kidnappers and killers in the area.

Speaking at the flag off of the construction of the four -block of classroom in Ayebode Ekiti, on Wednesday, the Chairman of Ajoni LCDA, Hon. Michael Ogungbemi, applauded the foundation for counting the Council worthy of such benefit.

Ogungbemi said the primary school was considered as a beneficiary being the host to pupils displaced by bandits at Itake community last year.

“This school is in dire need of facilities because it has two major schools now that some pupils were displaced by bandits at Itake under my LCDA before they were relocated here and this calls for provision of more classrooms due to overpopulation.

“The project was funded 90% by BASIA, but our LCDA paid a little counterpart funding. It will be built to standard and the mission is to combat the rising out of school children and boost quality of education.

“We are going to provide security here. Our operation EBORRAC, police, Amotekun and local hunters will be deployed here within the 12 weeks the project will be delivered to secure the workers and the facility”.

The BASIA’s Director of Operations, Mrs Laura Udobong, said the project is to be executed in partnership with Ajoni LCDA under the operation increase Africa’s school enrolment initiative.

Udobong said the President of the NGO, Dr Victor Ukorebi, was not comfortable with the statistics that Nigeria has over 20 million out of school children and about 40 million across Africa.

She said the mind boggling statistics spurred the NGO to pursue aggressive partnerships with governments across the continent for radical provision of facilities in countries like Togo, Zambia, Benin Republic, Nigeria and many others.

Udobong said: “This project was conceptualised to empower public schools in term of facilities to take children of school age out of the streets. Our mission is to improve learning, because it will be built to taste to guarantee conducive learning environment for pupils. We are doing it in Nigeria and other Africa nations.

“We partner government to build schools. In any organised society, government always partner the private entities to fund education. Nigeria has one of the largest population, so government can’t do it alone.

“This project is to be completed within 12 weeks. So, we want the government and host community to provide security for workers and also ensure that they maintain the facility after completion for better future collaboration”.