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    HomeLatest NewsFG Launches National Plan for Financing Safer Schools Sept

    FG Launches National Plan for Financing Safer Schools Sept

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    By Tony Tagbo, Abuja 

    The Federal Government says it will launch the National Plan for Financing Safe Schools next month.

    The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed who disclosed this at a stakeholders’ forum in Abuja on Monday said it would make the learning environment safer for children.

    The Minister who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Special Duties, Shehu Aliyu Shinkafi, highlighted the importance to safeguard schools from incessant attacks, saying the forum had key players to come up with solutions to the challenge.

    Mrs Ahmed pledged the commitment of the Federal government to making adequate budgetary allocation to finance the National Plan.

    In his remarks, the Chief of Defence Staff, Gen Lucky Irabor, assured that the military was committed to securing the nation’s schools.

    Gen. Irabor who was represented by Rear Admiral Chibuike Azike, the Director of Education, Defence Headquarters, moted that terrorist attacks on schools led to the closure of schools in parts of the country.

    He said, “Nigeria has been facing major security challenges, including attacks on schools, leading to closure of schools in the affected states. The armed forces are committed to securing Nigerian schools- both students and staff.”

    The head of the Safe Schools Unit of the Federal Ministry of finance, Budget and national Planning, Hajiya Halima Iliya Ville said that states, local governments and communities across the country should take ownership of the Safe Schools initiative, for it to achieve the desired outcomes.

    Also speaking, Emir of Keffi, Alh. Shehu Yamusa III called for the installation of Close Circuit Television (CCTV) in all schools, as well as, taking other necessary steps to make Nigerians schools safe for the pupils and staff.

     “Our students must have a safe environment to learn. This is the type of environment that we want and we must work to ensure it. Safety is a prime concern. If students and teachers are in danger, then education is in danger.

    “To have safe schools, I suggest that CCTV be provided in our schools. There should be multi-sectoral approach- parents, PTAs, traditional rulers and the communities should be involved, especially in the area of intelligence gathering”, he said.

    The President of the National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS), Chief Yomi Otubela said that safeguarding schools in the country has become more critical than ever.

    He urged stakeholders to pay more attention to the emotional health of students and staff, while stressing the need for intelligence sharing and community-based response programme , in case of emergency.

    In a paper presented at the event, Director, Social Development at the Ministry of Finance and Chairman Steering Committee Financing Safe Schools, Dr Sanjo Faniran urged stakeholders to take ownership of the programme as it was the responsibility of all to ensure safety in schools.

    Pointing out that insecurity at schools was a global issue, the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Interior, Dr Shuaib Belgore appealed to participants to take the issue seriously for the future of the country.

    Representatives from the Ministry of Education, Nigeria Governors Forum, State Commissioners for Education, security agencies and traditional rulers pledged their commitment to the success of the National Plan for Financing Safe Schools.  

    The theme of the forum is “Financing Safe Schools in Nigeria: Issues and Strategic Options for the Way Forward”.

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