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Girl-Child Education Development partners provide N19.8bn grant in North-West

He said that GPE was part of UN efforts to support developing countries, especially on how to bring more girls to school and make them stay in school and learn.

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Development partners under the platform of Global Partnership for Education (GEP), have provided 100 million dollars (N19.8bn) grant for girl-child education in five North-West states.

Mr Olatunde Adekola, Task Team Leader, GPE/NIPEP, made this known at the inauguration of the Nigerian Partnership for Education Project (NIPEP) on Monday in Abuja.

He listed the benefitting states as Sokoto, Jigawa, Kano, Kastina and Kaduna.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the partners are United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Department for International Development (DFID), UNICEF and World Bank.

The title of the project is `Improving Access and Quality of Basic Education with Emphasis on Girls Participation'.

Adekola, who is the World Bank Senior Education Specialist for Africa, said that the role of the bank was to supervise and to ensure that all the partners were accountable.

He said that GPE was part of UN efforts to support developing countries, especially on how to bring more girls to school and make them stay in school and learn.

The Word Bank education specialist said that the objective of the project launch was to sensitise the citizenry about the delivery process, knowledge sharing and capacity building.

``Since the effort is to bring more girls to school, we are focusing on five states in the North-West that have more girls out of school -- Sokoto, Jigawa, Kano, Kastina and Kaduna.

``The allocation is 100 million dollars; 95 percent of it is for the five states; while 5 per cent is for the supervising ministry and the Universal Basic Education (UBEC).

``The project seeks to give equitable opportunity to boys and girls and improve access and quality.

``It will provide scholarship for girls and and incentives so that they can come to school and stay in school; there will also be incentives for female teachers of the schools.’’

Adekola said that the development partners were already working on those states which also contributed to the choice of the five states.

According to him, DFID is working in Jigawa, Kano and Kaduna; USAID is working in Sokoto while UNICEF is working in Kastina.

He said that the money was not from World Bank but from a pool of contributions from UN development partners, adding that many countries had been benefiting in the last five years.

According to him, the project will run for four years.

On his part, Malam Adamu Adamu, the Minister of Education, said the project marked a turning point in getting out-of-school children back to school.

Represented by Prof Anthony Anwukah, the Minister of State for Education, Adamu said that 100 million dollars was a catalyst for boosting basic education.

Responding on behalf of the benefitting states, Gov. Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State thanked GPE for the gesture.

``We, as governors, assure that we will do our best in ensuring the provision of structures that will transparently execute this project.

``Money allocated for this project will be judiciously used,’’ he said.

The highlight of the event was the inauguration of the National Steering Committee on NIPEP comprising commissioners of education from the five states, representatives of UBEC and the Ministry of Education.

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