North: Group blames illiteracy on education deprivation
Supports Students, Educators With N1.7million
Group under the auspices of Tongston Holdings has blamed escalating illiteracy rate in northern Nigeria on education deprivation.
The group’s Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Engr. Bello Mohammed Tongo said this yesterday in Gombe State while delivering N1.7 million worth of prizes to students and educators at the 1st North-East Festival of Literature, Culture and Creativity.
Noting that the gesture was to further deepen the group’s support for education in Northeast Nigeria, Tongo lamented that the Northeast has been the hardest hit region in Nigeria, with high levels of insecurity and poverty.
According to the CEO, the Northeast, also records the highest illiteracy rates in Nigeria, disclosing that the lowest being 31.9 percent for males, and 14.9 percent for females both recorded in Yobe.
He said states in the North-East have female primary net attendance rates of 47.7 percent, maintaining that the education deprivation in Northern Nigeria is driven by various factors, including economic barriers and socio-cultural norms and practices that discourage attendance informal education, especially for girls.
He explained: “Therefore, the North-East Literacy Festival marks an important first step in reinvigorating the literacy levels in the region. The core objective of the Festival was aligned with Tongston’s core values of personal, economic, socio-cultural and sustainable development. Indeed, Tongston’s core proposition is premised on chronic unemployment, underemployment and employability amongst youth with basic/tertiary education, driven largely by the nature of the education system not preparing youth for the world of work, business or government.
“The focus is on building entrepreneurial thinking abilities whilst integrating media, finance and business to produce entrepreneurs that can drive sustainable socio-economic development in our nation and continent.
“It was on this premise that Tongston pledged its support in cash and in-kind prizes worth N300, 000 to the students. As part of the Tongston’s service offerings, and the centrality of the sustainable development goals as one of its core values.”
In addition, Tongo further disclosed that over N1.3 million worth of prizes comprised of N150, 000 worth of cash prizes and vouchers have been delivered to six educators from the representing winning educational institutions across the six categories at the primary and secondary level, to access Tongston’s maiden first of its kind Introductory Entrepreneurial Educators Course (TIEEC).