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Commissioner Harps On Importance Of Education

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Rivers State Commissioner for Education, Prof Chinedu Mmom, has described education as a veritable tool for growth and development of any society.
The commissioner stated this, last Monday, when he paid a familiarisation visit to the Rivers State Universal Basic Education Board (RSUBEB), Port Harcourt.
A press statement signed by the Chief Press Officer of the Rivers Universal Basic Education Board in Port Harcourt, Okechukwu Geoffrey, quoted the commissioner as saying that a lot can be achieved, if all hands were on deck, maintaining that the board was one of the places he considered very paramount to visit, having heard enough of its good works.
While commendingthe board under FynefaceAkah for the wonderful work they were doing, the commissioner said the purpose of the visit was to collaborate and synergise with the board to take the education sector in the state to a higher pedestal.
According to him, the time may appear limited but little is much when God’s hands are in it, assuring that “even within the limited time and resources, we can make impact with the cooperation of the board”.
Mmom further hinted that he has hit the ground running by setting up a committee on Needs Assessment of the public schools in the state with junior and senior secondary schools inclusive, pointing out that the vision of his principal (governor) was to make education in the state the envy of others.
He, therefore, thanked the state governor for the confidence reposed in him to serve at this point.
The commissioner maintained that the recent quiz competition he witnessed has proved that public schools can do better contrary to people’s believe, and promised that his ministry would not hesitate to carry out training and retraining of teachers.
He described training and retraining of teachers as very necessary as it would impact positively on the children as they would be returning to school in September, and thanked the board for the warm reception accorded him and his entourage.
Earlier in his welcome speech, the Executive Chairman of the State UBE Board, Ven. Fyneface Akah, had described the commissioner’s familiarisation visit as the very first from the ministry since he (Akah) assumed office.
He told the commissioner that the board was part of a SERVICOM system of the Federal Ministry of Education and Universal Basic Education Commission, saying that the board was structured along that line as its parent body(Ministry of Education).
He promised to work with the commissioner so as to deliver on the mandate given to them by the governor.
On the work scope,Akah said under the 2005 law establishing the board,it has not reneged in carrying out the work of administration and organisation of teaching and learning in schools.
According to him, “as board, we are committed to discreet implementation of these statutory responsibilities”, and reaffirmed the readiness of the board to work together with the commissioner to achieve set goals.
Akah also thanked the state Governor, Chief NyesomWike, for the provision of funds, and told the commissioner that the good news about Rivers SUBEB was that since he assumed office seven years ago, the board has been part of the first five on the radar of performing SUBEBs in Nigeria, adding that the state was up-to-date in different aspects, including the World Bank/Federal Ministry Education and the UBEC BESDA initiative, which is aimed at curbing the scourge of out-of-school children in Nigeria.
In his vote of thanks, Commissioner, Administration at the board’sheadquarters, Chief Faith Amaso, expressed happiness for the visit, and lauded the education commissioner for deeming it necessary to visit the board within the shortest time since assumption of office, and wished him well on his job.
The meeting had directors of the board and the Quality Assurance Director of the Ministry of Education, Mrs Sylvaline, as well as commissioner’s aids in attendance.

By: Amadi Akujobi

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Substance Abuse Becoming Thing Of Concern -Odu

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Rivers State Deputy Governor, Prof. Ngozi Nma Odu, has lauded the important role pharmacists play in the wellbeing of the society.
Odu gave this commendation while playing host to members of Association of Lady Pharmacists of Nigeria, Rivers State Branch at the Government House in Port Harcourt, yesterday.
The deputy governor said while others are sleeping, pharmacists work hard “to ensure we all live in a better society, especially when you talk about the dangers of substance abuse.”
Odu stressed that, “It is really becoming a thing of great concern because of the level of children getting involved in this thing. It is even coming down to primary schools which now increases the burden of what you are doing, so we appreciate you for what you are doing for the society which we all are living in.”
The deputy governor extolled the lady pharmacists for the scholarship scheme they were sponsoring, noting that it was “amazing because when you change the narrative of somebody’s life, you become what they call a destiny helper.”
The deputy governor added, “So, for me, it is something I would encourage. Even the Bible says when you do it for them you have done unto God. It is a thing we get a lot of blessings out off, you may not see it now but some day it will definitely come.”
She expressed gratitude to them for their support for the Fubara-led administration which according to her has continued to spur them into action.
“Let me thank you for upholding the governor and myself in prayers, because without prayers we won’t be here, many people have prayed and God has heard, please do not stop, even for good governance, we need God to grant us the wisdom and knowledge of what to do”, she said.
In her remarks, Chairman of the Rivers State Branch of Association of Lady Pharmacists of Nigeria, Ebelechukwu Odom, said they were at the Government House to identify with the Governor Fubara-led administration in the ongoing restructuring of the state, and pledged their allegiance and unflinching support to the administration.
She assured that they would utilize the competences of Lady Pharmacists in Rivers State and synergize with partners for improvement in health, education, research development and socio-economic wellbeing of humanity through relevant and appropriate interventions, projects and programmes.

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RSG Denies Rumours Of Cholera Outbreak In Soku

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The Rivers State Government says it is not aware of any cholera outbreak in Soku community in the Akuku Toru Local Government Area of the State.
This was contained in a statement made available to newsmen in Port Harcourt by the State Ministry of Health.
According to the statement signed by the Commissioner for Health, Dr Adaeze Chidinma Oreh, the clarification was necessary following numerous enquiries from the media over a purported outbreak of cholera in Soku community.
The statement read in part, “The Rivers State Ministry of Health has received numerous enquiries from the Press regarding an alleged outbreak of cholera in Soku community in Akuku Toru Local Government Area.
“Public health teams dispatched to investigate these alleged cases and deaths have so far received no confirmation of such.”
While describing cholera as a waterborne infectious disease, the commissioner said that the disease is notifiable, warranting escalating reports from disease surveillance and notification officers at the community level.
The statement clarified that the ongoing medical outreach in Soku community is in no way related to any outbreak of cholera.
“Outreaches have always been a way of getting accessible health care to underserved and vulnerable population, however, all such outreach activities must be conducted with approval from and in collaboration with the State Ministry of Health and as such no entity should be conducting outreaches outside the coordination of the ministry”, it warned.
The ministry further said that all infectious diseases of this nature are reported, managed and escalated by the Rivers State Ministry of Health.
Dr. Oreh said the statement should serve as a strong warning to anyone conducting or planning health activities without due recourse to the Rivers State Ministry of Health.
She added that any such activities found to be carried out without the knowledge and clearance of the State Ministry of Health will be fully investigated and dealt with in order to ensure the protection of the lives of the people.
“Therefore, the general public and members of the Press are advised to disregard the rumours making the round on an ongoing outbreak of cholera and the death of some citizens of Soku community in Akuku Toru Local Government Area of Rivers State as it is presently unfounded, misguided and capable of causing panic amongst citizens and residents.
“The general public is thus urged to remain calm and rest assured that the Rivers State Ministry of Health will continue to be a veritable source of public health information in the state”, the statement concluded.

John Bibor

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Bill On State Police Scales Second Reading

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The House of Representatives, yesterday, passed for second reading a bill to provide for the establishment of state police in the country.
Sponsored by the Deputy Speaker of the House, Benjamin Kalu and 14 others, the bill seeks to alter the relevant Sections of the 1999 Constitution to pave the way for states to establish their own policing outfits.
As lawmakers took turns to contribute to the debate on the floor of the House during yesterday’s plenary, Kalu who stood in for the Speaker, Abbas Tajudeen, urged members to look beyond political ambitions and think about the safety of Nigerians and Nigeria.
Also speaking, Babajimi Benson (APC, Lagos) said, “It is the job of the police to maintain law and order. We have a population of over 200m people but we have a police strength that is less than 400,000. State Police should be created to address the internal security challenges of Nigeria.”

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